Multi-Criteria Based Evaluation of User Preferences for Drought Index

Multi-Criteria Based Evaluation of User Preferences for Drought Index
Volume 9:1
Githungo, William, Silvery Otengi, Jacob Wakhungu, Masibayi Namusasi
Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology
Corresponding author:
William, Githungo
Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology
P.O. Box 30259 00100 Nairobi, Kenya
email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(Received 30 March 2016, in revised form 7 May 2016, Accepted 31 May 2016)
Drought is a natural hazard with regional characteristics and impacts the world over. Manifestation of impacts of drought in Kenya occurs in form of lost lives, livelihood disruption particularly among rural poor households, socio-economic impacts, and reduced economic growth. Decision-making based on drought early warning information aim to reduce vulnerability and improve response capacities of recipients. The provision of drought information to inform decisions presents challenges that transcend scientific advances in climate science. Availability of information on drought and its processing by target user audience is important. The overall objective of this study was to evaluate existing drought indices for their suitability for use in informing drought response actions in ASALs of Kenya. The study was done in the ASAL counties of Machakos, Makueni, and Kitui in Kenya. Using survey method user preferences for drought indices were elicited from drought researchers and professionals. Following the revised Simos procedure, the decision criteria for effective use of drought indices were evaluated. The evaluation assessed how the drought indices satisfy desirable properties of a good drought index and how they could be useful among stakeholders. Analysis indicated that respondents preferred sophistication as good property of a good drought index followed by tractability, robustness, transparency and eventually extendibility taking the lowest position.
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