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Projects : CUREE-Kajima Joint Research Program

CKIII-03: Decision Support Tools for Earthquake Recovery of Businesses

J. Beck, A. Kiremidjian, S. Wilkie, A. Mason, T. Salmon,
J. Goltz, R. Olson, J. Workman, A. Irfanoglu, and K. Porter

This report describes the results of a project titled Decision Support Tools for Earthquake Recovery of Businesses funded under Years 2 and 3 of Phase DI of the CUREe-Kajima Joint Research Program. CUREe (California Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering) is a non-profit organization founded in 1988 by eight California universities to collaborate on scientific research and applications that advance our understanding of how earthquakes affect the built environment—structures, bridges, roads and other infrastructure. Kajima Corporation is a prominent international engineering and construction firm based in Japan. Two CUREe members, California Institute of Technology and Stanford University, partnered with Kajima to develop the concept and methodologies for a decision-support system (DSS) to assist business managers in determining how to mitigate or to recover from earthquake damage to company facilities.

A DSS is an interactive software package to provide information and guidance for decision making [Mallach 1994, Spague and Ralph 1993]. The basic objective of this project is to design a DSS to make recommendations for the repair, retrofit, demolition or reconstruction of one or more buildings on the company's properties or within its portfolio. The DSS has the potential to be an important tool for planning and managing business recovery because the central concern in recovery is the status of the company's facilities and their ability to support production, operations, service, and management. The DSS can also be used to analyze potential losses and to perform cost-benefit analyses for setting priorities for the mitigation of earthquake hazards in existing buildings in advance of earthquakes.

It is envisaged that the DSS could be used by the managers of a company to perform complex "what if' analyses to evaluate alternative recovery strategies and to determine the best one, based on post-earthquake information and economic and other constraints. In addition to its use after a damaging earthquake, the DSS could also be used prior to any earthquake to investigate which mitigation actions and planning efforts would be more effective in enhancing the business recovery process.

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(December 1999)

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Consortium of Universities for Research in Earthquake Engineering
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