Spreadsheet engineering methodologies are diverse and sometimes contradictory. It is difficult for spreadsheet developers to identify a spreadsheet engineering methodology that is appropriate for their class of spreadsheet, with its unique combination of goals, type of problem, and available time and resources. There is a lack of well-organized, proven methodologies with known costs and benefits for well-defined spreadsheet classes. It is difficult to compare and critically evaluate methodologies. We present a paradigm for organizing and interpreting spreadsheet engineering recommendations. It systematically addresses the myriad choices made when developing a spreadsheet, and explicitly considers resource constraints and other development parameters. This paradigm provides a framework for evaluation, comparison, and selection of methodologies, and a list of essential elements for developers or codifiers of new methodologies. This paradigm identifies gaps in our knowledge that merit further research.
Grossman, T. & Ozluk, O. "A Paradigm for Spreadsheet Engineering Methodologies". Proceedings of EuSpRIG 2004 Conference, July 2004