In their book on the "Network economy", Varian and Shapiro argue that information can only be used to improve decisions and that this is the only situation in which data can produce economic value. It follows that you need know something about the problem-solving / decision-making process and how GIS relates to this.

Decision-making is nothing new to us. You and I make decisions all the time. Sometimes we have the pleasant task of selecting the best option from several possible solutions and in other cases we have to make a choice between mutually exclusive alternatives. Whilst some people survive on a 'gut reaction' or instinct, most of us try to think through the problem in a rational manner. This is especially true if we have to communicate and justify that decision to others. In these situations it is helpful to adopt a rigourous and robust procedure. In this topic you will uncover some approaches that have been adopted by decision-makers using GIS and consider how robust they might be under conditions of uncertainty.