Stochastic Economic Ranking Addresses Risk and Uncertainty for Decision-Makers

This paper discusses how a traditional stochastic approach in project economics used for screening and ranking can sometimes limit management visibility of all possible outcomes in a project.

Comparison of classic vs. proposed stochastic approach.
Fig. 1—Comparison of classic vs. proposed stochastic approach.
Source: SPE 213385.

Project screening and ranking is inevitable even when an organization faces no resource bottlenecks. In project economic predictions, the stochastic approach is prevalent and proves to be the most natural approach to address technical and commercial uncertainties. In contrast with a deterministic approach, a stochastic Monte Carlo simulation helps in understanding the range of possible outcomes to enable effective decision-making. The objective of the complete paper is to present an integrated stochastic work flow that addresses the subsurface, surface, and cost uncertainties to screen, rank, and grade opportunities early in the derisking process.


The proposed work flow simultaneously can address all technical and commercial uncertainties with a Monte Carlo model and predict a range of possible economic outcomes with customized economic analysis tools.

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