What is Decision Science?

Well the science of making decisions, of course! It is and isn’t as simple as that.

Decision making in these times – of technology, of pace, of more communication tools (and often less communication than ever before across businesses and organisations), changing demands on organisations, leadership roles, teams and our communities, financial and other constraints and more – making the right decisions, for the best use of critical resources to achieve key outcomes, is absolutely crucial.

  • Decision science starts with the question – what is the decision that needs to be taken?
  • It is the development of great questions and great models.  
  • It is a method of learning, engaging and optimisation of decisions and outcomes.


To say it more formally, according to Harvard’s Center for Health Decision Science:

While most fields of research focus on producing new knowledge, decision science is uniquely concerned with making optimal choices based on available information.

Decision science seeks to make plain the issues and value judgments underlying these decisions, and to identify tradeoffs that might accompany any particular action or inaction.

Decision scientists, more so than most others in the business world, are highly focused on the measurement of outcomes – as a result they are concerned with asking great questions, questions that are model-able, measurable, and meaningful to impact the right decision being made.

Decision science utilises a variety of tools which include:

  • models for decision-making under conditions of uncertainty,
  • experimental and descriptive studies of decision-making behavior,
  • economic analysis of competitive and strategic decisions,
  • approaches for facilitating decision-making by groups,
  • and mathematical modeling techniques.

Decision science has been used in business and management, law and education, environmental regulation, military science, public health and public policy.

At Catalyze, we are industry experts in the field of Decision Science and assist our clients to make truly optimised decisions, that best serve all the competing demands on their organisation or department from people, to processes, to budgets.

We do that by designing and delivering bespoke structured group decision processes, support by utilising world leading, proprietary software and tools.

Our established track record of enabling our clients to achieve mission critical results – whether its working a budget, improving shareholder value, making the world a better place or all three – tells us the best results are delivered through an effective decision-making process that truly engages people and aligns teams, departments and organisations.

Our methods are people focused, inclusive and transparent and build on robust and validated industry leading decision theory.