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Assessing the Cost-Effectiveness of Inspections by Combining Project Data and Expert Opinion

: Briand, L.C.; Freimut, B.; Vollei, F.

Kaiserslautern, 1999, 10 pp. : Ill., Lit.
ISERN Technical Report, 99-14
Reportnr.: 99-14
Research Report
Fraunhofer IESE ()
cost-effectiveness; expert knowledge elicitation; Monte Carlo method; software inspection

There is a general agreement among software engineering practitioners that software inspections are an important technique to achieve high software quality at a reasonable cost. However, there are many ways to perform such inspections and many factors that affect their cost-evectiveness. It is therefore important to be able to estimate this cost-effectiveness in order to monitor it, improve it, and convince developers and management that the technology and related investment are worthwhile. This work proposes a rigorous but practical way to do so. In particular, a meaningful model to measure cost-effectiveness is selected and a method to determine the cost-effectiveness by combining project data and expert opinion is proposed. To demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed approach, the results of a large-scale industrial case study are presented.