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Fuzzy Multicriteria Approval Method and its Application to Two Forest Planning Problems

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Many different multicriteria decision aid methods have been used in forestry decision support. When opinions of the general public are considered, methods that are simple to understand and easy to use are required. One such method is multicriteria approval (MA). It is based on approval voting, where the voters have been replaced by criteria. In MA, alternatives are approved or rejected with respect to each voter, i.e., each criterion. In the basic version, the approval threshold is crisp and defined by the system. The varying importance of the criteria is considered using the concept of ordinal dominance. Thus, the importance order of the criteria is needed to make a recommendation. The basic MA approach favors solutions that may be mediocre with respect to all criteria. A crisp approval threshold used in MA may also lead to awkward recommendations. We propose a new method using a concept of fuzzy approval for solving these problems. The fuzzy approval also easily extends to group decision-making problems. Two forestry applications are presented, where the fuzzy version of MA is tested and compared to the results of original MA. The possibilities of using fuzzy approval in forestry decision support are discussed.
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Keywords: Forest planning; fuzzy set theory; group decision support; multicriteria approval; natural resource management; voting theory

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-06-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.782 (Rank 17/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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