The importance of CRE decision-making, in particular the link through to the strategic decision making of the firm, has been recognised in a number of papers over the last 30 years. However, whilst some papers have focussed on the alignment of CRE and others on specific issues such as acquisitions, there is a paucity of research on the CRE decision-making process itself and the behaviour of the decision-maker. 

A semi-structured interview technique (Causal Network Elicitation Technique) is used to investigate the Mental Representation adopted by CRE decision-makers when faced with a particular scenario. The technique uses Decision Network, an extension of Bayesian Belief Network methodology, as a mechanism for making inferences. A Causal Network is developed to identify, decision, situational, attribute and benefit variables, together with utility weights to represent the Mental Representation of the decision maker’s decision.