Studies have shown that there is a high incidence of errors in spreadsheets.
Csernoch & Biro (2013)
Never assume a spreadsheet is right, even your own.
Raffensperger (2001)
Every study that has looked for errors has found them... in considerable abundance.
Panko & Halverson (1996)
Developing an error-free spreadsheet has been a problem since the beginning of end-user computing.
Mireault (2015)
Spreadsheets are often hard, if not impossible, to understand.
Mireault & Gresham (2015)
Spreadsheet errors are still the rule rather than the exception.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
Most large spreadsheets have dozens or even hundreds of errors.
Panko & Ordway (2005)
Spreadsheets can be viewed as a highly flexible programming environment for end users.
Abreu, et al (2015)
Spreadsheets are alarmingly error-prone to write.
Paine (2001)
Spreadsheets... pose a greater threat to your business than almost anything you can imagine.
Howard (2005)
Spreadsheets are easy to use and very hard to check.
Chen & Chan (2000)
Spreadsheet errors... a great, often unrecognised, risk to corporate decision making & financial integrity.
Chadwick (2002)
Spreadsheets are notoriously error-prone.
Cunha, et al (2011)
Despite overwhelming and unanimous evidence... companies have continued to ignore spreadsheet error risks.
Panko (2014)
1% of all formulas in operational spreadsheets are in error.
Powell, Baker, & Lawson (2009)
A significant proportion of spreadsheets have severe quality problems.
Ayalew (2007)
Programmers exhibit unwarranted confidence in the correctness of their spreadsheets.
Krishna, et al (2001)
The software that end users are creating... is riddled with errors.
Burnett & Myers (2014)
Spreadsheets have a notoriously high number of faults.
Rust, et al (2006)
People tend to believe their spreadsheets are more accurate than they really are.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Spreadsheets are dangerous to their authors and others.
Durusau & Hunting (2015)
The issue is not whether there is an error but how many errors there are and how serious they are.
Panko (2007)
A lot of decisions are being made on the basis of some bad numbers.
Ross (1996)
Spreadsheets are commonly used and commonly flawed.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2008)
Errors in spreadsheets are as ubiquitous as spreadsheets themselves.
Colbenz (2005)
Despite being staggeringly error prone, spreadsheets are a highly flexible programming environment.
Abreu, et al (2015)
Overconfidence is one of the most substantial causes of spreadsheet errors.
Sakal, et al (2015)
Even obvious, elementary errors in very simple, clearly documented spreadsheets are... difficult to find.
Galletta, et al (1993)
...few incidents of spreadsheet errors are made public and these are usually not revealed by choice.
Kruck & Sheetz (2001)
Spreadsheet development must embrace extensive testing in order to be taken seriously as a profession.
Bock (2016)
Spreadsheets are more fault-prone than other software.
Kulesz & Ostberg (2013)
Errors in spreadsheets... result in incorrect decisions being made and significant losses incurred.
Beaman, et al (2005)
The untested spreadsheet is as dangerous and untrustworthy as an untested program.
Price (2006)
Spreadsheets contain errors at an alarmingly high rate.
Abraham, et al (2005)
Research on spreadsheet errors is substantial, compelling, and unanimous.
Panko (2015)
Spreadsheet errors have resulted in huge financial losses.
Abraham & Erwig (2007)
Spreadsheet shortcomings can significantly hamper an organization's business operation.
Reschenhofer & Matthes (2015)
Spreadsheets are extraordinarily and unacceptably prone to error.
Dunn (2010)
The quality and reliability of spreadsheets is known to be poor.
Bishop & McDaid (2007)
It is now widely accepted that errors in spreadsheets are both common and potentially dangerous.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
It is irrational to expect large error-free spreadsheets.
Panko (2013)
The results given by spreadsheets are often just wrong.
Sajaniemi (1998)
Spreadsheet errors are pervasive, stubborn, ubiquitous and complex.
Irons (2003)
60% of large companies feel 'Spreadsheet Hell' describes their reliance on spreadsheets.
Murphy (2007)
94% of the 88 spreadsheets audited in 7 studies have contained errors.
Panko (2008)
Your spreadsheets may be disasters in the making.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Untested spreadsheets are riddled with errors.
Miller (2005)
Spreadsheets are the most popular live programming environments, but they are also notoriously fault-prone.
Hermans & van der Storm (2015)
Most executives do not really check or verify the accuracy or validity of [their] spreadsheets...
Teo & Tan (1999)
Every study, without exception, has found error rates much higher than organizations would wish to tolerate.
Panko (1999)

Spreadsheet bibliography

Title Are we overconfident in our understanding of overconfidence?
Authors Raymond R. Panko
Year 2014
Type Proceedings
Publication First Workshop on Software Engineering Methods in Spreadsheets
Series July
Abstract

In spreadsheet error research, there is a Grand Paradox. Although many studies have looked at spreadsheet errors, and have found, without exception, has error rates that are unacceptable in organizations, organizations continue to ignore spreadsheet risks.

They do not see the need to apply software engineering disciplines long seen to be necessary in software development, in which error types and rates are similar to those in spreadsheet development.

Traditionally, this Great Paradox had been attributed to overconfidence. This paper introduces other possible approaches for understanding the Grand Paradox. It focuses on risk blindness, which is our unawareness of errors when they occur.

Full version Available
Sample
Bat and ball

You are told that a bat and ball cost a dollar and ten cents and that the bat costs a dollar more than the ball.

How much does the ball cost?

A typical response is that the ball costs ten cents. This is wrong, of course.

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