AuthorBalthazard, Pierre Andre.
Committee ChairFerrell, William R.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe group decision making literature defines three methods of decision making used by and within groups: consensus, negotiation, and voting. Group support systems (GSS) research, with the creation of its enabling technologies, has focused on issues that support consensus-building and negotiation, thus relegating voting to the relatively limited role of prioritization. Surprisingly, the technology of aggregating opinions in GSS has received little research attention, and the procedures for it that have been implemented in even the most sophisticated groupware systems are relatively unsophisticated. Influence allocation processes (IAP) are voting and opinion aggregating methods that allow members to distribute some or all of their decision making influence to others in the group in order to exploit not only the group's knowledge of the alternatives, but its knowledge of itself. Only with the common use of GSS has their use become practical. Two families of influence allocation processes are reconsidered and expanded in this dissertation: SPAN, introduced by MacKinnon (1966a) and a technique based on a proposal by Morris DeGroot (1974) called Rational Consensus by Lehrer and Wagner (1981), who developed it and explicated it as a normative standard for combining opinion. This dissertation first considers the development and implementation of a set of IAP voting tools within GroupSystemsᵀᴹ. Second, a series of empirical studies is used to show how decision groups use voting tools for the selection of a correct solution. Third, simulation studies are used to develop guidelines for the allocation of influence in an alternative forced-choice problem. Finally, a case study of a real group using IAP for an authentic decisional problem is described. Influence allocation processes help reconcile differences in opinion, knowledge, and judgment. As such, they show much potential for improving the efficiency and effectiveness of group decision-making.
Degree ProgramBusiness Administration