The decision support process is defined as the process of providing the environment, conditions, mechanisms and techniques that serve the industry and make a good and applicable decision. It is a process that relies on modern techniques and quantitative and intelligent methods to support the decision maker in dealing with strategic and operational problems in different sectors of the organization to reach the optimal decision within the group Of appropriate alternatives.

The idea of the Decision Support Unit (DSU) of the Imam Abdulrahman bin Faisal University is that it is responsible for the development of decision support systems and models in the issues related to the development of educational, research and professional services provided by the university to internal and external beneficiaries in line with the variables and requirements of the education sector in the Kingdom. It monitors and follow up the external economic, social and environmental issues that achieve effective communication and partnership with the local, regional and global community. This unit is also is the university data spokesperson and the standard entity for obtaining data at the organization.

DSU achieves its objectives through various activities, including: collecting information about the university sectors from their original sources, and conducting monitoring, follow-up and analysis of the phenomena and variables affecting the university's performance of its various academic, research and community functions and work on measuring indicators of achievement in relevant activities and events to make decisions Taking into consideration the requirements of beneficiaries and stakeholders and their orientations to help anticipate, formulate and forecast the future, develop models that facilitate the generation of alternatives and develop proposals for appropriate development policies in all sectors, and facilitate the generation of alternatives to deal with the different developmental positions and display effectively on the decision-maker to be able to choose the most appropriate alternatives. The Unit's work does not stop at this point, but it continues to monitor the changes and transformations that occur as a result of the development decisions and present the results of follow-up to officials and decision-makers.


The strategic objective of the DSU is to build knowledge based on evidence on the real conditions of the community of beneficiaries in all its categories inside and outside the university, analyze it and enrich that knowledge with a view based on documented facts and then put it in the hands of the decision maker in a soft form Clear and easy to make appropriate decisions on the issues raised.

The strategic objective of the Unit stems from a number of general objectives:

  • Gathering accurate information from their original reliable sources.
  • Provide information and data to stakeholders, as appropriate.
  • Analyze information and build knowledge based on evidence.
  • Provide alternative solutions supported by scientific evidence to facilitate decision-making.
  • Information education for stakeholders (policy makers, the public, the business sector, and civil society).
  • Monitoring and evaluating the effects of the service and development policies and programs of the university on individuals and society.
  • Develop systems and models to support decision-making in educational, research, professional and development issues of interest to the university and society.
  • Supporting knowledge interaction and building partnerships with different actors at the local, regional and international levels in a manner that supports communication and knowledge exchange.
  • Adoption of the initiative to standardize data definitions at the level of institutions of higher education in KSA.

The nature of the issues on which DSU works

By their nature, the issues of DSU can be grouped into three types of issues: periodic issues, proactive issues, and urgent issues:

Periodic issues

These are medium- and long-term issues that mainly affect the academic, administrative and developmental performance of the university.

Proactive issues

  • These issues require anticipating events before they happen, extrapolating their results and developing suitable solutions. Examples of proactive issues include:
  • Early warning issues in expected crises.
  • Issues of expected responses to certain policies or decisions before they are issued.

Urgent issues

Examples of urgent issues include:

  • Request for opinion on a subject.
  • Request an information file for a topic.
  • Request to identify the views of stakeholders or their reactions to a subject.

Benefits of the DSU
Published on: 28 August 2018
Last update on: 10 September 2018
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