This paper first presents a brief practical review of the elements of statistical decision theory, decision making under probabilistic uncertainty, as applied to dams and levees. The methodology is developed through three examples with dams and then a more extensive example with levees. The concepts of risk analysis are presented. It is shown that the most likely practical application of the concepts is in the presentation of the decision basics, including those involving uncertainty, to the decision maker. The discussions are introductory in nature and do not involve complex mathematics. A general overview is provided of the practical application of the methodology to problems with dams and levees. The concepts are seen to include all the methods of conventional engineering practice. Then the elements of probabilistic methods are added to model uncertainties to produce a useful practical product. © 1983.
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