Deciding and Doing: Decision Making in Natural Context

Jens Rasmussen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


Academic research on decision making and judgement in several cases has come to the conclusion that decision makers are inconsistent, that experts do not agree in judgement, and that much less information is applied for judgement than the experts have reported as being significant. On the other hand, analyses have shown that decision making in actual work context is consistent and effective when judged against the pragmatic performance criteria which are actually governing work and which very often are different from the criteria considered in research. The paper presents a discussion of research on decision making within several domains, such as political judgement, troubleshooting, diagnostic judgement, and decision biases. It concludes that practical decision making is not resolution of separate conflicts, but continuous control of the state of affairs in a dynamic environment. It is, therefore, depending on the tacit knowledge of context and cannot be separated from action planning.From here, different modes of practical decision making modes are discussed with reference to the skill-, rule-, knowledge frame work.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDecision Making in Action : Models and mMethods
EditorsG. Klein, J. Orasano, R. Calderwood, C. E. Zsambok
Number of pages15
Place of PublicationNorwood, NJ
PublisherAblex Publishing
Publication date1993
Publication statusPublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


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