Valutazione di interventi pubblici in ambiti conflittuali, applicazione di un metodo multicriteri di aiuto alla decisione al problema della regolazione del Lago Maggiore.
(Tesi di dottorato, Università di Friborgo.  Ed. Sapiens, Lugano. 1999.)

 (Evaluation des interventions de l’Etat dans des situations de conflit : Application d’une méthode multicritère d’aide à la décision au problème de la régulation du lac Majeur.


Fabio B. Losa

Abstract: The main concern of Evaluation of public interventions in conflicting environments is to produce an aid to decision making and its related application to the management of a multipurpose regulated reservoir.

From a methodological point of view, the resulting "decision-aid tool" falls within the framework of the French or European School, the so-called multicriteria decision-aid (MCDA). This consists of two complementary elements: an information support, by means of the explicit structuring of the decision process in its various stages; and a primarily analytical support, which is the application of an outranking method to the evaluation of, and subsequent comparison between, alternative solutions. This instrument fulfils a twofold function. On the one hand, it aims to strengthen the decision-making capacities of public corporations when faced with complex social issues, and consequently to boost the effectiveness and efficiency of public intervention. On the other hand, it is intended to ensure greater transparency in its decision process, which indeed reflects the growing demand for external auditing or scrutiny and for a more democratic public decision-making.

From an empirical point of view, this method is applied to the real case of the regulation of Lake Maggiore. Also known as Verbano, it is a regulated natural lake situated between Italy and Switzerland. It is known as the most important basin of the sub-alpine area on account of its multiple - occasionally conflicting - socio-economic uses (tourism and leisure activities, electrical power production, agricultural production, etc.). Its large alpine watershed is characterised by extremely variable weather conditions, which cause important outbreaks of flood and drought periods of both the lake and its outflow, the Ticino river, with consequent substantial damages to the socio-economic systems related to them.

There are a number of significant aspects to this application. First, the decision process is the result of a straightforward structuring operation whereby an exhaustive descriptive and analytical picture can be drawn of the various facets of the problem and of the problem solving. Secondly, the procedure of definition, analysis and evaluation of alternative solutions is based upon the successive utilisation of two multidimensional methods: the solution of a multiobjective optimal-management problem for the definition and analysis of the alternatives, conceived as a triple composed of structural action, a normative action and an optimal-regulation policy; and (secondly) the application of ELECTRE III as a multicriteria ranking method for the comparison of the alternatives. Thirdly, there is the use of sensitivity analysis not merely for testing the robustness of results, but also as a decision-aid tool in solving conflicts and in negotiating settlements between the Italian and the Swiss part.

Although largely exemplary, the results of the application are far from uninteresting. To begin with, adopting optimal-regulation policies usually turns out to be very advantageous for all involved, hence preferable to the current management model, which relies exclusively on the manager’s experience. Secondly, the method that has been elaborated, with both its information and analytical-evaluative components, seems to have a lot to offer in terms of decision aids for the analysis and assessment of alternative solutions and, consequently, in terms of greater decision power on the part of public corporations, of negotiation skills of the various interest groups involved as well as of the transparency of decision making.


Introduzione. Parte Prima (Gli approcci multicriteriali di aiuto alla decisione):
Capitolo 1, L’evoluzionne dell’aiuto alla decisione dall’analisi costi-benefici agli approcci multidimensionali;
Capitolo 2, Processo decisionale e aiuto alla decisione: principi, contenuti e metodi degli approcci della scuola francese.

Parte Seconda (Studio di caso: applicazione di un metodo multicriteri di aiuto alla decisione al problema della regolazione del Lago Maggiore):
Capitolo 3, Il problema della regolazione del Lago Maggiore;
Capitolo 4, Gli elementi del processo decisionale del problema del Lago Maggiore;
Capitolo 5, Valutazione delle alternative e analisi dei risultati del problema del Lago Maggiore.

Opere consultate.

Published as a book by:

1999 Editrice Sapiens ? CH Lugano

ISBN 88-8380-000-1

Distribuzione: Edizioni Gottardo SA, Via Frasca 8, CH-6901 Lugano.