Encyclopedia of Decision Making and Decision Support Technologies (2 Volumes)

Encyclopedia of Decision Making and Decision Support Technologies (2 Volumes)

Frederic Adam (University College Cork, Ireland) and Patrick Humphreys (London School of Economics, UK)
Release Date: April, 2008|Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 1019
ISBN13: 9781599048437|ISBN10: 1599048434|EISBN13: 9781599048444|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-843-7


As effective organizational decision making is a major factor in a company's success, a comprehensive account of current available research on the core concepts of the decision support agenda is in high demand by academicians and professionals.

Through 110 authoritative contributions by over 160 of the world's leading experts the Encyclopedia of Decision Making and Decision Support Technologies presents a critical mass of research on the most up-to-date research on human and computer support of managerial decision making, including discussion on support of operational, tactical, and strategic decisions, human vs. computer system support structure, individual and group decision making, and multi-criteria decision making.

Topics Covered

The many academic areas covered in this publication include, but are not limited to:

  • Business Intelligence
  • Dashboards of information
  • Distributed decision making and decision support
  • DSS, DMSS, EIS, Groupware
  • End-user computing and development
  • Implementing and reusing decision systems
  • Managerial decision making at a group, individual, and firm level
  • Modelling for decision support
  • Multi-Criteria Decision Making
  • New technologies and decision support
  • Operational, tactical, and strategic decision making
  • Research methods for the decision and decision support area
  • Supporting decision making with computer systems
  • Synchronous and asynchronous decision making

Reviews and Testimonials

This book is very important for consolidating knowledge about the field of decision support systems. It brings knowledge about tools, techniques and methods for helping people to make better decisions under one cover. It is very impressive, well written and logically organized.

– Frada Burstein, Monash University, Australia

This book has successfully brought together a wide range of topics into a simple collection of well-written essays.

– American Reference Books Annual (2008)

The Encyclopedia of Decision Making and Decision Support Technologies will contribute to the formalisation of the DSS area in its current, diversified form.

– Frederic Adam, University College Cork, Ireland

In addition to a full subject index, each volume contains both a standard table of contents and a contents by keywords to aid in navigation.

– Book News Inc. (Nov. 2008)

Overall, Adam and Humphreys have successfully brought together a wide range of topics into a simple collection of well-written essays. Academic in nature, this encyclopedia will be useful to those who make decision support systems, as well as those who work n the development of decision support technologies.

– American Reference Annual, Vol. 40 (2009)

Table of Contents and List of Contributors

Search this Book:


The field of Decision Support Systems (DSS) is one of the most enduring in the Information Systems (IS) domain, having emerged in the 1960s at the beginning of the history of Information Systems as an area of research, from the pioneering work of Simon, Keen, and Scott Morton amongst many others. Through 5 decades, this field has continued to attract considerable and increasing attention from researchers and practitioners, under a range of banners.

Back in 1991, Teng and Galletta (1991) conducted a survey of IS researchers which showed 32% of respondents listed DSS as their area of research, with a further 22% listing artificial intelligence and 21% database management systems. These three areas, which totalled 281 mentions out of 845 valid responses, were actually the top three IS research areas listed by Teng and Galletta (1991). In more recent times, Arnott and Pervan’s (2006) comprehensive review of the DSS field yielded 1093 research papers published from 1990 to 2004 in 14 major journals, the key journals in a broadly defined IS research area. These papers represented 15.2% of all papers published in the 14 journals.

These statistics present a view of DSS as a core area of the IS domain and one with a dynamism well illustrated by the strength of such international groupings as the AIS Special Interest Group on Decision Support, Knowledge, and Data Management Systems (SIG DSS), the Working Group 8.3 of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP) on DSS, and the EURO Working Group on DSS (EWG DSS). Needless to say, researchers from these groupings form a large proportion of the contributors to this encyclopedia. Nevertheless, as evidenced by the wide scope of the contibutions presented in the encyclopaedia and the range of backgrounds and expertise of their authors, the area of DSS can now successfully claim to integrate groundings in IS and many other disciplines, ranging from Operations Research to Management and to Social Psychology, with excellent, insighful and sometimes even fascinating results.

Notwithstanding the debates about the best vehicle to study the way organisations work and what kind of systems to develop to support their needs, as evidenced by Morgan’s (1986) superb Images of Organisations, we stand firm in our belief that thinking of organisations as decision making entities and the systems to support them as decision support system is a perspective that has served our discipline very well. Though no perspective should ever be adopted in an exclusive fashion and to the detriment of other equally valid perspectives, we will continue to preach the wide adoption of decisions and decision support artefacts as objects of study, now and in the future. In passing, we will smile knowingly when colleagues greet us with their usual joke: “But DSS is dead at the stage! ” or “DSS! It’s just like flogging a dead horse!! ” As this encyclopaedia illustrates, the DSS horse is not only alive and well, it is prancing around the field; or has it even jumped the fence and run to new pastures?

However, the success of the DSS field is also one of its weaknesses: as the area has grown and knowledge from an increasing number of domains is brought to bear on the problems that must be studied, it becomes increasingly difficult to maintain a complete vision of DSS and all its latest developments. Already, it is arguably the case that a researcher would have to struggle to keep a handle on all requisite knowledge to be able to understand or review all the DSSs papers produce in a year. For instance, when both qualitative, human oriented, and quantitative mathematical approaches are used, it becomes difficult to keep pace with developments in Multi-Criteria Decision Making or in the modelling of uncertainty on the one hand, as well as with our increased understanding of the role of emotions in human decision making on the other hand. Furthermore, for students of DSS, young researchers, and practitioners who want to train themselves to be worthy of the DSS specialist label, it is increasingly difficult to know what to learn and what skills to practice.

This encyclopaedia project is born out of these observations that the diversity in our domain requires a source of information that does justice to the growth of DSS in recent years, offers the theoretical basis for researching and developing DSS, and provides visibility on the topics where research should be directed in the future. Of course, no single book can meet all the requirements for such an ambitious target, but we hope this encyclopaedia of Decision Making and Decision Support Technologies will contribute to the formalisation of the DSS area in its current, diversified form. Repository of formal DSS knowledge, reference for the research carried out to date, instructional manual, springboard for future research, this book should help students, researchers, consultants, and managers alike in their learning and experimentation with DSS concepts and artefacts.

In sourcing the material hereby presented, we have appealed to wide constituencies of researchers and practitioners both within the specialised groups which explicitly work on DSS and in the wider IS community. Response was good from both constituencies, with the IFIP working group 8.3 on DSS particularly well represented. In classifying the material and to facilitate browsing through the 110 entries, we have relied on the authors of the contributions to provide each a keyword which best captured the essence of their contributions. It is this keyword which was used in categorising entries in alphabetical order, as befits any encyclopaedia (see table of contents). It is proposed that this provides a straightforward way to navigate over 1,000 pages of these volumes, either in leisurely fashion, following no particular sequence, or in a more orderly fashion, to meet a specific research, learning, or teaching need. The glossary presented at the end of the encyclopaedia, compiled with the help of each contributor, should also be an extremely valuable resource as it presents 778 terms and definitions pertaining to our discipline, which students may find difficult to grasp and for which there may be no obvious source of a recent definition. Definitions, of course, can be difficult to agree upon, but the whole point of this broadly contributed compilation effort is precisely to offer a broad spectrum of perspectives on DSS topics such that our glossary should be a true representation of what DSS researchers around the world think is important in the area.

In concluding this preface, let us wish that these volumes represent an authentic, fresh, and useful book (in the words of one of our Editorial Board Members) that adds value to the domain, solves the problem of finding clear sources of information for the DSS researchers of the future, and provides fresh impetus to pursue the study and development of DSS artefacts that support people and organisations as they make their decisions.

Frédéric Adam and Patrick Humphreys
Cork and London, July 2007

Author(s)/Editor(s) Biography

Frédéric Adam is a Senior Lecturer in the department of Accounting, Finance and Information Systems at University College Cork in Ireland. He holds a PhD from the National University of Ireland and Université Paris VI jointly. His research has been published in a number of international journals including the Journal of Strategic Information Systems, Decision Support Systems and Systèmes d'Information et Management. He is the co-author of the "Manager's Guide to Current Issues in Information Systems" and "Postgraduate Research" (both published by Blackhall Publishing, Dublin, Ireland) and is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Decision Systems. He acts as a consultant in the areas of information systems selection and implementation and executive systems on a regular basis.
Patrick Humphreys is Head of the Institute of Social Psychology at the London School of Economics and Political Science and co-director of the London Multimedia Lab for Audiovisual Composition and Communication, where he directs the project “Creative Partnerships: Pathways to Value” for the Arts Council England. He also leads the LSE team on the EU Framework 6 Project “Incas: Intellectual Capital Statement for Europe”. He has both research and practical expertise in innovative and creative decision-making, decision support systems, and enhancement of resources for health, culture, development, and networking. He has been involved in initiatives involving organizational transformation and sector development in many countries. He has been involved in initiatives involving organizational transformation and sector development in many countries. He is chair of IFIP WG8.3. In 2006 he was programme chair for the IFIP WG8.3 Conference on Creativity and Innovation in Decision Making and Decision Support and was a sponsor of the workshop “Live dialogues between different individuals and alternative urban models in the Pearl River Delta” coordinated in China by Vitamin Creative Space.


Editorial Board

  • David Arnott, Monash University, Australia
  • Frada Burstein, Monash University, Australia
  • Sven Carlsson, University of Lund, Sweden
  • Georgios Doukidis, University of Athens, Greece
  • Eleanor Doyle, University College Cork, Ireland
  • Peter Gelleri, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary
  • Zita Paprika, Corvinus University Budapest, Hungary
  • David Paradice, Florida State University, USA
  • Jean-Charles Pomerol, University Paris 6, France
  • Dan Power, University of Northen Iowa, USA