A Process View to Evaluate and Understand Preference Elicitation

Shahrokh Nikou, József Mezei, Peter Sarlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


This paper focuses on multi-attribute design problems in which several quantitative and/or qualitative attributes aresimultaneously involved. Preference elicitation methods dealing with decision-makers’preferences are often employed tosolve such problems. The present paper proposes a conceptual framework that considers preference elicitation as a processshaped by the interaction of different factors including the researcher, methodology, questionnaire and respondent in a givencontext, at the same time. The aim of the framework is to assist in choosing a decision support tool among various multi-attribute decision-making methods, as well as in evaluating and understanding preference elicitation results. To illustrateand exemplify the use of the framework, it is applied to a real-world case of end user preferences of mobile serviceplatforms. We make use of two methods that are suitable for such a setting: analytic hierarchy process and conjointanalysis. Albeit with considerable discrepancies, the results show that both methods provide insightful information onthe principle. Nonetheless, to a large degree, these methods perform differently in the case of non-complex tasks andunknowledgeable respondents, which the process view aids in evaluating and understanding. Copyright © 2015 JohnWiley & Sons, Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305–329
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • preference elicitation
  • conjoint analysis
  • analytic hierarchy process
  • mobile service platform


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