INSIDE: An efficient guide for sustainable remediation practice in addressing contaminated soil and groundwater

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Modeling criteria interaction in decision-making problems is complex and often neglected. In complicated problems, like contaminated site remediation projects, independency of involved criteria is not a realistic assumption. INfluence based deciSIon guiDE (INSIDE) is a methodology that enables sustainable decision making and management in contaminated site remediation practice. Unlike most previous decision-support methods, INSIDE considers realistic interactions among all involved criteria. The method not only gives a one-time best option for choosing a remediation method for the project at hand, but also a management plan for further improvements of the system. INSIDE recognizes economic, environmental, social, and technological considerations for the most sustainable practice. Eight criteria are defined based on these aspects and they can be interrelated. This means that a criterion, e.g., remediation time, does not need to belong to any pre-defined category such as economic, environmental, social, or technical, but can interact with other criteria. This allows for a system with many degrees of freedom that is more realistic for practical problem-solving. In INSIDE, the DEcision MAking Trial and Evaluation Laboratory (DEMATEL) and Analytic Network Process (ANP) techniques are combined for assigning weights to criteria and scoring of remediation alternatives, respectively. Thus, the proposed methodology gives a managerial cone of influence versus importance for all involved criteria in the system. The method is applied to a data-scarce case study in Iran to prioritize between remediation methods for a contaminated groundwater aquifer. The results show that human health risk and environmental impacts are more influential than other evaluated criteria. The suggested methodology should be further tested on a variety of actual remediation problems for additional evaluation.


External organisations
  • Sweden Water Research AB
  • Nagasaki University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Water Engineering


  • ANP, Contaminated sites, Decision making, DEMATEL, Remediation
Original languageEnglish
Article number139879
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Publication categoryResearch