Delphi Technique Law and Legal Definition

The Delphi technique is a process by which a group of experts provides independent forecast assumptions via questionnaires. The forecasts are then revised until a composite emerges that incorporates many of the assumptions.

Advantages include:

  • Allows participants to remain anonymous
  • Inexpensive
  • Free of social pressure, personality influence and individual dominance
  • Allows sharing of information and reasoning among participants
  • Conducive to independent thinking and gradual formulation
  • Can be used to reach consensus among groups hostile to each other

Disadvantages include:

  • Judgments are those of a selected group of people and may not be representative
  • Tendency to eliminate extreme positions and force a middle-of-the-road consensus
  • More time-consuming than the group process method
  • Should not be viewed as a total solution to forecasting
  • Requires skill in written communication
  • Requires adequate time and participant commitment (about 30-45 days)