Document-Driven DSS Resources

Description and Definition

Document-Driven DSS is a relatively new field in Decision Support. Document-Driven DSS is focused on the retrieval and management of unstructured documents. Documents can take many forms, but can be broken down into three categories: Oral, written, and video. Examples of oral documents are conversations that are transcribed; video can be news clips, or television commercials; written documents can be written reports, catalogs, letters from customers, memos, and even e-mail.

Jane Fedorowicz (1996) estimated that American businesses store almost 1.3 trillion documents which can use up to 50% of their floor space. Yet only 5 to 10 percent of these documents are available to managers for use in decision making. Fedorowicz defined document as a "chunk" of information. Unfortunately documents are not standardized in a uniform pattern or structure. Managers and IT/IS staff need a way to transform these documents into usable formats that can be compared and processed to support decision making. New information technology and software is making this concept into a reality.

Information Retrieval

Examples of information retrieval systems are Lexis-Nexis, InfoSys, and UNCOVER. Web search engines such as WebCrawler, Alta Vista and Lycos help web users to define searches based on "keyword" inputs. Cognitive Modeling, such as "My Yahoo" integrates knowledge of the user into retrieval tools. Retrieval can even be based on AI fuzzy theory models that use parameters for searches based on relative commonality or reason to the keyword.

Links to Information Sites

  • Accrue Decision Series - Accrue business intelligence solutions integrates multiple Knowledge Discovery engines with many different sources.
  • Altris Software - solutions that manage, control and disseminate the knowledge contained within an organization's documents

  • Autonomy - The Autonomy Content Infrastructure™ (ACI) is a new technology specification that automates operations on unstructured information for cross enterprise applications.
  • InXight - Offers numerous content analysis software solutions.
  •, Inc - Document conversation software.

  • MasterMind Soft Tools - Colorado corporation specializing in the design and implementation of web enabled software. Their main product WebDocMaster allows you to putyour documents under control so they may be viewed and printed from anywhere on the corporate intranet or Internet.
  • Megaputer - TextAnalyst. Case Studies, White Papers, TextAnalyst Tutorial. TextAnalyst is available either as a standalone application for MS Windows or a set of COMponents that can be easily integrated in an external decision support system. Free evaluation copy. "Making correct decisions often requires analyzing large volumes of textual information."
  • TextQuest - Information on Text Analysis Software.
  • - A web-based collaboration tool, document management tool, and knowledge base tool.

Links to Related Articles


  1. Fedorowicz, J., "Document Based Decision Support" in Decision Support for Management, in R. Sprague Jr. and Hugh J Watson (eds.) Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1996.
  2. Kumar, Anil; Global Executive Information Systems: Key Issues and Trends. New York: Garland Publishing, Inc., 2000
  3. Meadow, Charles T., Bert R. Boyce, and Donald H. Kraft; Text Information Retrieval Systems 2nd ed., San Diego: Academic Press, 2000
  4. Swanson, E. B. and M. J. Culnan, "Document-Based Systems for Management Planning and Control: A Classification, Survey, and Assessment", MIS Quarterly, Vol. 2, No. 4, Dec. 1978, pp. 31-46.

The initial version of this page was created by Alan Peterson in December 2000.