A hybrid fuzzy group decision support framework for advanced-technology prioritization at NASA

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The prioritization of advanced-technology projects at the National Aeronautic and Space Administration (NASA) is a difficult task. This difficulty is due to the multiple and often conflicting objectives in addition to the inherent technical complexities and valuation uncertainties involved in the assessment process. As such, a systematic and transparent decision support framework is needed to guide the assessment process, shape the decision outcomes and enable confident choices to be made. Methods for solving Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) problems have been widely used to select a finite number of alternatives generally characterized by multiple conflicting criteria. However, applying these methods is becoming increasingly difficult for technology assessment in the space industry because there are many emerging risks for which information is not available and decisions are made under significant uncertainty. In this paper, we propose a hybrid fuzzy group decision support framework for technology assessment at NASA. The proposed objective framework is comprised of two modules. In the first module, the complicated structure of the assessment criteria and alternatives are represented and evaluated with the Analytic Network Process (ANP). In the second module, the alternative advanced-technology projects are ranked using a customized fuzzy Technique for Order of Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS). We demonstrate the applicability of the proposed framework through a case study at the Kennedy Space Center.




Tavana, M., Khalili-Damghani, K. and Abtahi, A.R. (2013) ‘A Hybrid Fuzzy Group Decision Support Framework for Advanced-Technology Prioritization at NASA,’ Expert Systems with Applications, Vol. 40, No. 2, pp. 480-491.