Robust designs for field experiments with blocks




Mann, Rena Kaur

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This thesis focuses on the design of field experiments with blocks to study treatment effects for a number of treatments. Small field plots are available but located in several blocks and each plot is assigned to a treatment in the experiment. Due to spatial correlation among the plots, the allocation of the treatments to plots has influence on the analysis of the treatment effects. When the spatial correlation is known, optimal allocations (designs) of the treatments to plots have been studied in the literature. However, the spatial correlation is usually unknown in practice, so we propose a robust criterion to study optimal designs of the treatments to plots. Neighbourhoods of correlation structures are introduced and a modified generalized least squares estimator is discussed. A simulated annealing algorithm is implemented to compute optimal/robust designs. Various results are obtained for different experimental settings. Some theoretical results are also proved in the thesis.



spatial correlation, optimal design, field experiment, neighbourhood, annealing algorithm, block design, robust design, fixed effects