Presentation Details

The Fourth International Conference on Knowledge, Culture and Change in Organisations

Facilitating the Strategic use of Market Research Using a Decision Support System

Dr Mark A.P. Davies.

Shows how market researchers might adopt a more strategic role in assisting their clients in the selection of extensions to AHP using ideation, model structuring, evaluation and interpretation using a knowledge-based decision support system (KBDSS).

AHP (or analytic hierarchy process) is a trade-off model designed to present solutions to multicriterion problems comprising of conflicting objectives. Specifically, AHP can be used as a toolbox and source of memory for assisting clients in managing creativity, complexity of decisions, control, credibility, conflict and cognitive burden.

Many marketing problems rely on rapid feedback for speed to market. This encourages intuitive decision making that may not be accurate or reliable, particularly when multiple objectives are at stake. AHP encourages a more thorough, reasoned approach toward decision-making. Marketing decisions are also often non-routine. Since standard AHP models call for tedious pairwise comparisons of all alternative options, a KBDSS is designed to show how previous models and judgements can be revised. This is based on using prior databases and sensitivity analysis. A menu of decision rules can assist the client in the appropriate choice of AHP extensions to use in model building and evaluation. These features improve decision making. The KBDSS can clarify the decision boundaries of a problem, reconcile divergent group judgements, enhance learning, refine the judgements, and improve understanding, analysis and interpretation. Cognitive burden is reduced by adapting databases incorporating previous models and judgements to suit the new market conditions. An application for a marketing communications problem is presented.


Dr Mark A.P. Davies  (United Kingdom)
Senior Lecturer (Marketing)
Department of Management and Languages
Heriot-Watt University

Director of Management with Marketing Degree at the School of Management. Research interests include managerial aspects of marketing communications and modelling. Work has appeared in Journal of Advertising, Business Horizons, Business Journal, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Creativity and Innovation Management, Journal of Marketing Management, Journal of The Operational Research Society, International Journal of Quality and Reliability Management, Journal of International Consumer Marketing, Strategic Information Systems, and Total quality Management.

  • Knowledge
  • Information
  • Research
  • AHP

(30 min. Conference Paper, English)