Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Investigation of Multi-Criteria Decision Consistency: A Triplex Approach to Optimal Oilfield Portfolio Investment Decisions
by Qaradaghi, Mohammed, Ph.D., The George Washington University, 2016, 316; 10141465
Abstract (Summary)

Complexity of the capital intensive oil and gas portfolio investments is continuously growing. It is manifested in the constant increase in the type, number and degree of risks and uncertainties, which consequently lead to more challenging decision making problems. A typical complex decision making problem in petroleum exploration and production (E&P) is the selection and prioritization of oilfields/projects in a portfolio investment. Prioritizing oilfields maybe required for different purposes, including the achievement of a targeted production and allocation of limited available development resources. These resources cannot be distributed evenly nor can they be allocated based on the oilfield size or production capacity alone since various other factors need to be considered simultaneously. These factors may include subsurface complexity, size of reservoir, plateau production and needed infrastructure in addition to other issues of strategic concern, such as socio-economic, environmental and fiscal policies, particularly when the decision making involves governments or national oil companies. Therefore, it would be imperative to employ decision aiding tools that not only address these factors, but also incorporate the decision makers’ preferences clearly and accurately. However, the tools commonly used in project portfolio selection and optimization, including intuitive approaches, vary in their focus and strength in addressing the different criteria involved in such decision problems. They are also disadvantaged by a number of drawbacks, which may include lacking the capacity to address multiple and interrelated criteria, uncertainty and risk, project relationship with regard to value contribution and optimum resource utilization, non-monetary attributes, decision maker’s knowledge and expertise, in addition to varying levels of ease of use and other practical and theoretical drawbacks. These drawbacks have motivated researchers to investigate other tools and techniques that can provide more flexibility and inclusiveness in the decision making process, such as Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) methods. However, it can be observed that the MCDM literature: 1) is primarily focused on suggesting certain MCDM techniques to specific problems without providing sufficient evidence for their selection, 2) is inadequate in addressing MCDM in E&P portfolio selection and prioritization compared with other fields, and 3) does not address prioritizing brownfields (i.e., developed oilfields). This research study aims at addressing the above drawbacks through combining three MCDM methods (i.e., AHP, PROMETHEE and TOPSIS) into a single decision making tool that can support optimal oilfield portfolio investment decisions by helping determine the share of each oilfield of the total development resources allocated. Selecting these methods is reinforced by a pre-deployment and post-deployment validation framework. In addition, this study proposes a two-dimensional consistency test to verify the output coherence or prioritization stability of the MCDM methods in comparison with an intuitive approach. Nine scenarios representing all possible outcomes of the internal and external consistency tests are further proposed to reach a conclusion. The methodology is applied to a case study of six major oilfields in Iraq to generate percentage shares of each oilfield of a total production target that is in line with Iraq’s aspiration to increase oil production. However, the methodology is intended to be applicable to other E&P portfolio investment prioritization scenarios by taking the specific contextual characteristics into consideration.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Deason, Jonathan P.
Commitee: Abeledo, Hernan, Francis, Royce, Shittu, Ekundayo, Timilsina, Govinda
School: The George Washington University
Department: Engineering Mgt and Systems Engineering
School Location: United States -- District of Columbia
Source: DAI-B 77/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Industrial engineering, Energy, Operations research
Keywords: Decision analysis, Energy management, Investment portfolio prioritization, Multi-criteria decision making, Oil and gas
Publication Number: 10141465
ISBN: 9781339968254
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