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Adaptive Decision Support for Planning Under Hard and Soft Constraints

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Executive Summary

Given the 60-month limit on services, it is crucial that advice from case managers or software take into account longer-term plans, rather than immediate gratification. The constraints on planning arise from the client's preferences and her limitations, and from availability of services. For instance, a low-literacy client cannot be expected to succeed in college courses, nor can a client without a car arrive at a site unreachable by public transportation. Other constraints arise from regulations, such as a limit to how many months of volunteer work a client may use to satisfy the work requirement. Uncertainty arises whenever case managers make judgments about the likelihood of a client's success in a specific activity.

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