Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


The Air Force is increasingly turning to a team approach for decision making. When team members are geographically separated it can be expensive for them to meet in a traditional face to face setting. Group Decision Support Systems (GDSS), designed to help groups make decisions, may be able to support these groups in a distributed mode. The assertion of this thesis is that a GDSS can indeed support such distributed processes and that these processes will be of higher quality than decisions made in a face to face environment. This study explores decision quality in terms of quality of the outcome, and acceptance of the decision by group participants. Through a laboratory experiment, groups of three or four members met to solve a management problem. Results suggest that quality of the decision depends upon the type of group interaction, the order of that interaction and the scenario difficulty. The analysis found no statistically significant difference for decision quality in either type of group interaction. Additional research is necessary to examine the potential for Air Force use of distributed GDSS to reduce travel costs without reducing decision quality.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



Thesis presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of Logistics and Acquisitions Management.