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Role and potential of decision support systems in forestry

, Sharad Tiwari, Rekha Agarwal
Published: 30 September 2020
Plants and Environment , Volume 2, pp 108-112; doi:10.22271/2582-3744.2020.sep.108

Abstract: Decision Support Systems (DSS) are essential tools for forest management practitioners to help take account of the many environmental, economic, administrative, legal and social aspects in forest management. This paper is concerned with the technique to develop DSS for forest management system to evaluate models and methods considering all the important factors to categorize the problem. The problem is based on temporal and spatial parameters, number of objectives, decision makers and goods and services. Some of these problem dimensions are inter-related, and we also found a significant relationship between various methods and problem dimensions, all of which have been analysed using contingency tables. The results showed that 63% of forest DSS use simulation modeling methods and these are particularly related to the spatial context and spatial scale and the number of people involved in taking a decision. The analysis showed how closely Multiple Criteria Decision Making is linked to problem types involving the consideration of the number of objectives, also with the goods and services. On the other hand, there was no significant relationship between optimization and statistical methods and problem dimensions, although they have been applied to approximately 60% and 16% of problems solved by DSS for forest management, respectively. Metaheuristics and spatial statistical methods are promising new approaches to deal with certain problem formulations and data sources. Nine out of ten DSS used an associated information system, but the availability and quality of data continue to be an important constraining issue, and one that could cause considerable difficulty in implementing DSS in practice. Very often DSS is used largely based to study market economy. The results suggest a strong need to improve the capabilities of DSS in this regard, developing and applying MCDM models and incorporating them in the design of DSS for forest management in coming years.
Keywords: Decision making / models / DSS / Number of Objectives / spatial statistical / Take / goods and services / Methods and Problem

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