Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Operational Sciences

First Advisor

Richard F. Deckro, PhD

Second Advisor

Jack M. Kloeber, Jr, PhD


The Department of Energy is focusing a long-term development effort on producing cheaper, safer, and faster state-of-the-art soil remediation technologies. To assist with the management of these innovative technology development projects, ways of quantifiably measuring technical risk were investigated through a detailed literature review. 'Technical risk' was defined in this study as the combination of the consequences of undesired events and their likelihood. Careful design of the inputs into a technology selection decision support system accounted for the uncertainty in forecasting final characteristics of remediation technologies still in the early phases of R&D. Experts made subjective probability estimates of these cost, schedule, and performance factors. Examination of several measures of final cost and schedule risk focused on communicating the risks inherent in different technological alternatives to the technology manager for operational, not theoretical, use. These risk measures included subjective measures, using utility theory, and objective measures, using variation about an expected value. A new measure was developed, the expected unfavorable deviation, which is similar but superior to the semi-variance as a measure of downside risk. These simple risk measures can be used whenever uncertainty is expressed through probability distributions of cost, schedule, and performance characteristics.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number


Included in

Risk Analysis Commons