The Application of Strategic Choice Approach (Case Study: Electricity Shortage Problem Caused by Cryptocurrency Mining in Iran)

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Industrial Management, Faculty of Production and Operations, Alborz Campus, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Industrial Management, Faculty of Management, University of Tehran,Tehran, Iran.

3 Department of Industrial Management, Faculty of Management and Economics, Tarbiat Modares University,Tehran, Iran.


The continuous and round-the-clock operation of cryptocurrency mining devices generates significant heat that requires powerful cooling systems. Therefore, the main problem of mining is its high electricity consumption and energy usage. Unfortunately, due to the lack of planning by the country's officials, we are facing the problem of electricity shortage, which the growing digital currencies have exacerbated. Since decision-making in the real world (including the electricity shortage problem caused by mining) is complex and uncertain due to various influential factors, this research aims to apply a strategic selection approach to decision-making and provide solutions to solve the electricity shortage problem caused by cryptocurrency mining in Iran. In this study, the Strategic Choice Approach (SCA), one of the soft operational research methods, has been used for analysis, structuring, and decision tree development. For this purpose, four methods (styles) of SCA, which include ten steps, have been implemented. A working group consisting of twelve experts and stakeholders in digital currencies, facilitated by the researchers of this study, has been formed, and specific flowcharts and labels have been used. According to the SCA method, decision-making areas, decision options, areas of uncertainty, exploratory options, and decision trees have been designed. Finally, a ″commitment package″ (″improvement package″) has been proposed to provide practical solutions. This article provides solutions for solving the electricity shortage problem caused by cryptocurrency mining through the SCA. For this purpose, specific tasks have been assigned to the Islamic Consultative Assembly, the Ministry of Economy, the Ministry of Energy and Foreign Affairs, and the government, excluding the mentioned ministries and some key players in digital currencies, which should be carried out in the present and future. By structuring the research problem through the SCA method as one of the soft operations research methods, the readers and users of this research will learn more details and dimensions of the mentioned method,  contributing to expanding their knowledge of soft operations research. Although the SCA  method has been implemented in Iran and other countries for a long time in various social and organizational issues, the diagrams, shapes, and tables used to implement SCA in this research contribute more to the readers' knowledge. It also helps to localize this method and other research done in the country.