Proceedings of the

The 33rd European Safety and Reliability Conference (ESREL 2023)
3 – 8 September 2023, Southampton, UK

Value Personas Based Quantitative Decision Support: An Approach to Multi-Facetted Decision Problems

Ingo Schönwandta, Jens Kahlenb and Daniel Lichtec

Institute for the Protection of Terrestrial Infrastructure, German Aerospace Center (DLR), Germany.


Resilience management and the planning of critical infrastructure is subject to contested problem framings. Herein, parties to a decision may disagree on the nature of the problem and possible solutions so that finding clear-cut strategies is difficult. Common policy analysis methods, such as cost-benefit analysis, are designed to aid decision making but are limited in the face of multiple contested problem framings. Recent advances propose the use of worldviews to imitate these framings in decision support. This work further refines the approach by replacing the proposed worldviews with a range of 49 unique value personas to represent an extended variety of problem framings with a broader spectrum. Leveraging the human-nature coupled lake model as a use-case to simulate a decision problem, robust decision making (RDM) is employed to evaluate the decision problem resulting from the different framings of the introduced value personas. Compared to using worldviews, the results show that applying societal values to construct value personas benefits the decision support with the ability to evaluate even marginal changes in individual values rather than differing abstract worldviews and enables a more fine-tuneable analysis.

Keywords: Societal values, Robust decision-making, Quantitative decision support, Deep uncertainty, Multi-actor, Worldviews, Resilience management.

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