Research Findings - Objective 4
Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the GIS-MCE model.
Upon the completion of the MCE model and analysis of the final suitability layer, the results were evaluated to determine the strengths and limitations of the model.
The primary strength of the model is the ability to apply it to multiple regions other than Guelph, given that adequate data is provided. Since there are 29 cities within Ontario that have been approved to open a marijuana dispensary, the ability to apply the model to different regions is crucial in successfully introducing a formerly illicit drug. Another strength of the model includes the ability to change the specific weights of the factors without compromising the constraints layers. Our standardized factor weights were determined based on a combination of scholarly articles and government regulation, however the importance of these factors may vary largely from region to region, allowing factor weights to be manipulated greatly to produce different results. This is an important aspect of the model as other cities may have specific parameters they would like to incorporate into the model.
The ability to change these rankings may pose as a limitation as if these weights are not logically assigned. If the weights are changed in a way that does not deliver a consistency ratio above 1.0, the logic is flawed and must be carefully thought-out to assure that the factor weights are logical.
An apparent limitation of our model is its ability to only be applied to the scale of dissemination areas. This limitation prevents us from being able to use data for factors that may want be considered in the MCE model such as average income. This can also create possible limitations if data related to the dissemination area level cannot be found or is deemed inadequate.
Finally, it is recognized that the population density figures do not take into account neighbouring dissemination areas population densities, and so the densities used may not respresent the true density of citizens frequenting each area.