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Insights from interval-valued ratings of consumer products - a DECSYS appraisal

Ellerby, Zack; Miles, Oliver; McCulloch, Josie; Wagner, Christian


Oliver Miles

Josie McCulloch


The capture and analysis of interval-valued data has seen increased interest over recent years. This offers a direct means to capture and reason about uncertainty in data, whether obtained from sensors or from people. Open-source software (DECSYS [1]) was recently released to facilitate the efficient capture of interval-valued survey responses. Potential real-world applications are broad ranging, and this paper documents an initial test-case of the software and its underpinning methodology, in a marketing-centric application. It provides an illustration of the insights offered by interval-valued responses, in this case relating to consumer preferences. We apply two approaches to describe and draw insights from the data: inferential statistics and descriptive visualisation methods. Statistical results indicate that overall purchase intention was well-described by four factors: value, healthiness, taste and brand. The capture of uncertainty information, afforded by intervals, also permitted identification of six factors that contribute to purchase intention uncertainty-relating to taste, ethics and visual appearance. Visualisations of interval-valued responses, using the IAA [2]-[5], also highlighted factors with high degrees of uncertainty-in particular, product ethics. This information could prove valuable for retailers in determining how to focus future marketing campaigns. It may prove equally valuable for market regulators, by informing where to improve product labelling information. More generally, the case study provides an overview of capturing and analysing intervals, highlighting some of the challenges, but also the unique potential to gain additional insights not available using conventional, 'crisp', approaches.


Ellerby, Z., Miles, O., McCulloch, J., & Wagner, C. (2020). Insights from interval-valued ratings of consumer products - a DECSYS appraisal

Conference Name IEEE International Conference on Fuzzy Systems 2020
Start Date Jul 19, 2020
End Date Jul 24, 2020
Acceptance Date Mar 20, 2020
Publication Date Jul 20, 2020
Deposit Date Apr 22, 2020
Publicly Available Date Jul 20, 2020
Publisher Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
Public URL
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Additional Information Part of the IEEE World Congress on Computational Intelligence (IEEE WCCI)


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