Chapter 4Analyzing Resources

Edward A. Pohl

Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR, USA

Simon R. Goerger

Institute for Systems Engineering Research, Information Technology Laboratory (ITL), U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC), Vicksburg, MS, USA

Kirk Michealson

Tackle Solutions, LLC, Chesapeake, VA, USA


Decision-making . . . is the irrevocable commitment of resources today for results tomorrow.

(George K. Chacko (Chacko, 1990, p. 5))

For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not first sit down and estimate the cost, to see whether he has enough to complete it? – Unknown

4.1 Introduction

A fundamental fact of decision-making includes the commitment of resources. Resources are essential assets committed to perform a trade-off analysis and to execute the subsequent decision. They come in many forms and include the following: money, facilities, time, people, and cognitive effort. Resources required for possible resolution of an issue are included in the resource space (Figure 4.1). To better understand the cost of each alternative, it is necessary to identify the required set(s) of resources, define the resource space, and determine which resources will be committed for each alternative.

Schema for Resource space.

Figure 4.1 Resource space

This chapter discusses the resource categories that comprise a resource space, techniques to ...

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