RDMlab: Robust Decision Making for Good Decisions Without Predictions

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    Developing Robust Strategies for Climate Change and Other Risks: A Water Utility Framework

    RAND researchers and collaborators present a comprehensive approach for water utilities to assess climate risks to their systems and evaluate adaptation strategies. The approach, based on Robust Decision Making (RDM) is demonstrated through pilot studies with two water utilities: Colorado Springs Utilities and New York City Department of Environmental Protection.

What Is Robust Decision Making?

Robust Decision Making is a rigorous combination of scenario planning with powerful computing to support decisionmakers by helping to

  • identify potential strategies robust to future unknowns
  • characterize the vulnerabilities of such strategies, and
  • evaluate tradeoffs among alternatives.

Developed by researchers from RAND, Evolving Logic, the Pardee RAND Graduate School, and elsewhere, RDM can inform decisions under conditions of "deep uncertainty" in areas such as energy and resources management, infrastructure investment, and policy planning for cases in which stakeholders do not know — or cannot agree upon — actions, consequences, and probabilities.

Applications of RDM to Policy and Decisionmaking

RDM experts have applied the methodology in many areas. Learn more by clicking on the links below.

Collaborating to Improve Decisionmaking

RDMlab is intended to provide a service to researchers and practitioners in other organizations. It is a seed to engender information sharing and collaboration among those who seek to make methods for decisionmaking under uncertainty widely available and applicable to a range of pressing policy problems.

We encourage you to browse the information available here and check back frequently for updates. Please contact us to discuss collaboration, dissemination, and participation through RDMlab.