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Modelling with MCDSS: what about ethics?

Author: Jelassi, Tawfik ; Sinclair-Desgagné, BernardINSEAD Area: Technology and Operations ManagementIn: Lecture notes in economics and mathematical systems: multiple criteria decision support by P. Korhonen; A. Lewandowski and J. Wallenius; Springer, 1991 Language: EnglishDescription: p. 223-228.Type of document: INSEAD ChapterNote: Please ask the Library for this chapterAbstract: Modelling the preferences of a decision maker requires that: all the criteria and attributes relevant for making a choice be thoroughly considered; available alternatives be listed and ranked with respect to each criterion; and the various rankings be combined to yield a global evaluation of the alternatives. The decision maker, even when he/she uses sophisticated decision aids, is often found to have difficulty with these requirements. In this paper it is argued that the decision maker's hesitation might be due to a lack of understanding of the role of each criterion should play in the global judgement. A careful look at ethics -as the discipline that considers the justifications people offer for the principle and values they hold- in conjunction with the development and usage of multiple criteria decision support systems (MCDSS)- would then help enlightening the decision maker.
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Modelling the preferences of a decision maker requires that: all the criteria and attributes relevant for making a choice be thoroughly considered; available alternatives be listed and ranked with respect to each criterion; and the various rankings be combined to yield a global evaluation of the alternatives. The decision maker, even when he/she uses sophisticated decision aids, is often found to have difficulty with these requirements. In this paper it is argued that the decision maker's hesitation might be due to a lack of understanding of the role of each criterion should play in the global judgement. A careful look at ethics -as the discipline that considers the justifications people offer for the principle and values they hold- in conjunction with the development and usage of multiple criteria decision support systems (MCDSS)- would then help enlightening the decision maker.

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