Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Accuracy in spreadsheet modelling systems can be reduced due to difficulties with the inputs, the model itself, or the spreadsheet implementation of the model. When the "true" outputs from the system are unknowable, accuracy is evaluated subjectively. Less than perfect accuracy can be acceptable depending on the purpose of the model, problems with inputs, or resource constraints. Users build modelling systems iteratively, and choose to allocate limited resources to the inputs, the model, the spreadsheet implementation, and to employing the system for business analysis. When making these choices, users can suffer from expectation bias and diagnosis bias. Existing research results tend to focus on errors in the spreadsheet implementation. Because industry has tolerance for system inaccuracy, errors in spreadsheet implementations may not be a serious concern. Spreadsheet productivity may be of more interest.


Presented at EuSpRIG 4th annual conference, Dublin July 24/25, 2003.