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SADA Overview


Spatial Analysis and Decision Assistance (SADA) addresses common environmental assessment issues by integrating and streamlining methods from several fields of study. These studies include:


• Data Exploration and Visualization (see Graphical Displays)

• Geographic Information System [see Geographic Information System (GIS)]

• Statistical Analysis (see Statistical Analysis)

• Human Health Risk Assessment (see Setting Up Risk)

• Ecological Risk Assessment (see Ecological Risk Assessment)

• Data Screening and Decision Criteria (see Overview of Decision Frameworks)

• Geospatial Interpolation (see Overview of Geospatial Modeling)

• Uncertainty Analysis (see Overview of Decision Frameworks)

• Decision Analysis (see Overview of Decision Frameworks)

• Sample Design (see Secondary Sampling Schemes)

While SADA was written within the context of environmental analysis, many of the processes were broadly constructed to deal with a wide array of problems concerning spatially distributed information. For simplicity, this manual will be written in the language of environmental assessment.


This manual assumes that the reader is familiar with the Windows environment and comfortable with the topics covered in this manual. References are made to other resources outside of the manual for topics that may not be familiar to all users. While some concepts may be discussed briefly, the manual is written primarily to show how to implement these concepts within the software.


A number of files have been included on the distribution disks to help the user get started. They include comma-delimited data files (.csv), example SADA files (.sada), and some GIS layer files (.dxf). The data sets contained in these files are intended for demonstration purposes only; they were not originally sampled at the locations seen in the GIS overlays and have been altered. ToxicologicalDatabases.mdb and ScenarioDatabases.mdb are also included for setting up the human health risk module in SADA while a benchmark database is included for ecological risk assessment setup. All of these file types will be discussed and demonstrated throughout the manual.