Multi Criteria Decision Analysis - MCDA

MCDA is a discipline collecting formal approaches which seek to take explicit into account of multiple criteria in helping individuals or groups explore decisions that matter.

The philosophy behind MCDA is to develop frameworks and methods for decision aid, with the purpose of helping decision-makers to understand the problem and their own contribution to the decision making process.

A (multi-criteria) decision support process involves a Decision-Maker (DM) and an Analyst (AN).

The application of a multi-criteria decision support method can be done with or without a decision support software.

In the first case the decision support consists of a series of discussions in which the analyst interviews the decision maker about the decision problem. Based on this discussion and on his own competence, the analyst chooses to use a MCDA method.

In many cases the decision support process can be assisted with a software. MCDA software are implementations of MCDA methods into the computer code. There are software that can allow the use of different methods in parallel.

Published August 6, 2012

Contact: Gerd Kjølle, SINTEF Energy Research