Keywordsdecision support systems
integrated pest management
integrated weed management
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CitationMasters, R. A., & Sheley, R. (2001). Invited synthesis paper: principles and practices for managing rangeland invasive plants. Journal of Range Management, 54(5), 502-517.
PublisherSociety for Range Management
JournalJournal of Range Management
AbstractInvasive plants reduce the capacity of ecosystems to provide goods and services required by society, alter ecological processes, and can displace desirable species. They can reduce wildlife habitat quality, riparian area integrity, rangeland economic value, and enterprise net returns. The invasion process is regulated by characteristics of the invading plant and the community being invaded. The presence and spread of invasive plants is often symptomatic of underlying management problems that must be corrected before acceptable, long-term rangeland improvement can be achieved. Disturbance appears to be important early in the invasion process because it creates vacant niches that alien plants can occupy. Control of invasive plants may only open niches for establishment of other undesirable plants unless desirable plants are present to fill the vacated niches. In many instances, rangelands have deteriorated to the point that desirable species are either not present, or in such low abundance that plant community recovery is slow or will not occur without revegetation after invasive plants are controlled. Integrated weed management employs the planned, sequential use of multiple tactics (e.g. chemical, biological, cultural, and mechanical control measures) to improve ecosystem function (energy flow and nutrient cycling) and maintain invasive plant damage below economic levels, and emphasizes managing rangeland ecosystem functions to meet objectives rather than emphasizing a particular weed or control method. Sustainable, integrated invasive plant management strategies require assessing plant impacts, understanding and managing the processes influencing invasion, knowledge of invasive plant biology and ecology, and are based on ecological principles. Invasive plant management programs must be compatible with and integrated into overall rangeland resource management objectives and plans. Because of the complexity of managing invasive plants, it is imperative that relevant ecological and economic information be synthesized into user-friendly decision support systems.
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AN EXPERT SYSTEM USING FUZZY SET REPRESENTATIONS FOR RULES AND VALUES TO MAKE MANAGEMENT DECISIONS IN A BUSINESS GAME.Ferrell, William R.; DICKINSON, DEAN BERKELEY. (The University of Arizona., 1984)This dissertation reports on an effort to design, construct, test, and adjust an expert system for making certain business decisions. A widely used approach to recurring judgmental decisions in business and other social organizations is the "rule-based decision system". This arrangement employs staff experts to propose decision choices and selections to a decisionmaker. Such decisions can be very important because of the large resources involved. Rules and values encountered in such systems are often vague and uncertain. Major questions explored by this experimental effort were: (1) could the output of such a decision system be mimicked easily by a mechanism incorporating the rules people say they use, and (2) could the imprecision endemic in such a system be represented by fuzzy set constructs. The task environment chosen for the effort was a computer-based game which required player teams to make a number of interrelated, recurring decisions in a realistic business situation. The primary purpose of this research is to determine the feasibility of using these methods in real decision systems. The expert system which resulted is a relatively complicated, feed-forward network of "simple" inferences, each with no more than one consequent and one or two antecedents. Rules elicited from an expert in the game or from published game instructions become the causal implications in these inferences. Fuzzy relations are used to represent imprecise rules and two distinctly different fuzzy set formats are employed to represent imprecise values. Once imprecision appears from the environment or rules the mechanism propagates it coherently through the inference network to the proposed decision values. The mechanism performs as well as the average human team, even though the strategy is relatively simple and the inferences crude linear approximations. Key aspects of this model, distinct from previous work, include: (1) the use of a mechanism to propose decisions in situations usually considered ill-structured; (2) the use of continuous rather than two-valued variables and functions; (3) the large scale employment of fuzzy set constructs to represent imprecision; and (4) use of feed forward network structure and simple inferences to propose human-like decisions.