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The Ontario nuclear power dispute: a strategic analysis

Motahareh Armin1, Keith W Hipel12* and Mitali De3

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Systems Design Engineering, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, N2L3G1, Canada

2 Centre for International Governance Innovation, Waterloo, Ontario, N2L 6C2, Canada

3 School of Business and Economics, Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, N2L3C5, Canada

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Environmental Systems Research 2012, 1:11  doi:10.1186/2193-2697-1-11

Published: 29 October 2012



The Graph Model for Conflict Resolution methodology is used to formally investigate the nuclear power dispute that took place in the Canadian province of Ontario in order to obtain strategic insights into its resolution. This flexible systems methodology is used to study the nuclear conflict at two key points in time, 2008 and 2010.


The results of the 2008 analysis show that the only decision makers involved in the conflict who hold real power are the Federal and Ontario governments, although at the beginning of the investigation other organizations had also been considered as participating decision makers. According to a strategic analysis carried out for the conflict as it existed in 2010, the equilibria or potential resolutions of the 2008 analysis are found to be transitional states leading to the 2010 resolution. Moreover, a negative attitude by the Federal Government can cause an outcome to occur that is not highly preferred by either the Federal Government or the province of Ontario.


By closely following the decision makers’ actions, a detailed analysis of the nuclear dispute in Ontario is carried out. Stability, sensitivity, and attitude analyses are performed, and the results are closely correlated with what happened in reality.

Ontario nuclear power dispute; Graph model for conflict resolution