How to Market OR/MS Decision Support

How to Market OR/MS Decision Support

Masayuki Ueda (Sapporo University, Japan)
Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 16
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-603-2.ch009
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This research examines what to do to have decision makers more utilize OR/MS decision support. We investigate OR/MS decision support from a new viewpoint of service. Firstly, based on the fact that what is provided by OR/MS decision support is information to aid in decision making, we show that OR/MS decision support shares characteristics with service, hence can be considered as a kind of service. Next, we analyze OR/MS decision support from the viewpoint of what is necessary for service of high quality, and we clarify the issue of communication gaps. If we investigate preceding research in OR/MS (Operations Research/Management Science), it turns out that there is surely a problem with communication gap between decision makers and decision supporters. Finally, we show that it is effective to utilize problem specification, which is a decision-maker-friendly description of problems proposed by research groups including the author, as one approach to bridge the communication gap.
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Service science requires multidisciplinary approach that integrates elements of computer science, operations research, industrial engineering, business strategy, management sciences, social and cognitive sciences, legal sciences, and so on (Council on Competitiveness, 2004; IBM Research). OR/MS is commonly thought to play an important role in service science where service are scientifically analyzed. However, as Hidaka (2006) pointed out, service usually include many components that cannot be properly expressed as mathematical models and thus cannot be solved by OR/MS in isolation. It may be caused by human factor or social practice and regulation. For such problems, it is necessary for OR/MS to collaborate with other fields of research.

As mentioned above, OR/MS is in general regarded as one of the tools of service science. Compared with this, this research regards OR/MS (more properly, OR/MS decision support) as one of the objects of research in service science. There are some bodies of research that discuss the necessity of applying OR/MS to service or the expectation to such studies. However, there is little research that explicitly analyzes OR/MS as a service.

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