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Prioritisation of an IT Budget within a Local Authority
The Journal of the Operational Research Society
Vol. 53, No. 1 (Jan., 2002), pp. 36-46
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/822877
Page Count: 11
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Meetings, Operations research, Financial budgets, Budget policy, Cluster analysis, Entropy, Decision making, Group facilitation, Simulations, Psychological assessment
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This paper describes the prioritisation of an IT budget within a department of a local authority. The decision problem is cast as a simple multiattribute evaluation but from two perspectives. First, as an exercise in group decision making. Here the emphasis is on a shared process wherein the object is to obtain consensus. The use of an explicit evaluation framework and the ability to interact with the evaluation data in real time via a simple spreadsheet model were found to improve the decision making. Second, the prioritisation is made analytically. The motivation is to determine the degree to which the rankings are the result of the structural characteristics of the projects themselves rather than of the differences in importance attached to the achievement of the goals represented by the project attributes. Three methods are used: Monte Carlo simulation of ranks, cluster analysis based on attributes and an approach based on entropy maximisation. It is found that in the case studied the structure inherent in the data is high and so the results of the analyses are robust. Finally, a procedure is suggested for the appropriate use of these analyses via a facilitator to aid prioritisation decisions.
The Journal of the Operational Research Society © 2002 Operational Research Society