This paper describes a new knowledge acquisition method using a generic design environment where context-sensitive knowledge is used to build specific DSS for rural business. Although standard knowledge acquisition methods have been applied in rural business applications, uptake remains low and familiar weaknesses such as obsolescence and brittleness apply. We describe a decision support system (DSS) building environment where contextual factors relevant to the end users are directly taken into consideration. This ‘‘end user enabled design environment” (EUEDE) engages both domain experts in creating an expert knowledge base and business operators/end users (such as farmers) in using this knowledge for building their specific DSS. We document the knowledge organisation for the problem domain, namely a dairy industry application. This development involved a case-study research approach used to explore dairy operational knowledge. In this system end users can tailor their decision-making requirements using their own judgement to build specific DSSs. In a specific end user’s farming context, each specific DSS provides expert suggestions to assist farmers in improving their farming practice. The paper also shows the environment’s generic capability.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/shahmiah/3/