Research at Curtin University of Technology Explores Tools for Teaching
Probability and Risk

Research at Curtin University of
Technology Explores Tools for Teaching
Probability and Risk

According to Darren O’Connell, Australian institutes of higher learning weren’t teaching probability and risk in a manner that reflected the technological advancements of the 21st century. The methods employed by educators tended to be relatively inexpensive, easy to use, have a wide range of statistical functions, could analyze large data sets and didn’t require significant staff training costs. But O’Connell believed those advantages were often outweighed by frequent inaccuracies and the absence of many commonly-used statistics and methods.

To prove the point, he explored these deficiencies in his doctoral research at Curtin University of Technology (Australia), using Palisade solutions. Having utilized tools such as @RISK in an occupational setting, O’Connell was convinced that the technology offered more efficient and accurate means of teaching risk.

» Read the full case study
» More about the Curtin University of Technology
» More about Darren O'Connell’s presentation

@RISK and DecisionTools Suite Now Available in Seven Languages
The current version of @RISK and the DecisionTools Suite, version 6.1, has now been fully translated into Spanish, Portuguese,
French, German, Japanese, and Chinese. The user interface, example models, video tutorials, and complete help files and user manuals have all been carefully translated. Users can specify the language at install, and even change languages later -- all from the same installer. This is a major benefit to multinational companies seeking to roll out a single risk analysis standard around the world. Contact me below if you would like to change the language of your course license or purchase a new one.

@RISK and DecisionTools Suite
Maintenance Update

In addition to the language translations, a maintenance update to @RISK and DecisionTools Suite software has been released, version 6.1.2. Contact me below if you would like to upgrade your course license with this update.

@RISK The seamless integration of Palisade
      products into the Excel development
      environment is a huge advantage...
      This in turn reduces training and system
      development costs, because risk
      departments are not investing in
      expensive/extensive proprietary
      system solutions.
Trial Versions

                           Darren O'Connell, Researcher,
                           Curtin University of Technology

Recent School Adoptions

Over 60,000 students use the DecisionTools Suite annually in their MBA and graduate level programs. In 2012, over 800 universities worldwide adopted the DecisionTools Suite. Professors in business, engineering, OR, and other fields keep their students on the cutting edge by teaching the latest analytical techniques from Palisade. Some major schools with programs and courses that standardized on the DecisionTools Suite last month include:

US and Canada:

  Ithaca College
Penn State Great Valley
Université de Moncton
University of California, Davis
University of Texas at El Paso
University of Texas, Austin


  Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business - China
Digital Data Management Corporation - Japan
Ecole des Mines d'Albi-Carmaux - France
ESSEC Business School - France
Hochschule Zittau/Goerlitz - Germany
Indian Institute of Management - India
Indian Institute of Technology - India
ITESM - Mexico
Libera Università - Italy
Macquarie University - Australia
Ricardo Bernardo Prada/CAPES - Brazil
Technion Israel Institute of Technology - Israel
University Industrial de Santander - Colombia
Universidad EAFIT - Colombia
Universidad Nacional de Rosario (UNR) - Argentina
Universiteit Gent - Belgium
UNSW - Australia
Licensing Options

There are three easy ways to get the DecisionTools Suite for your students:


Course Licenses available from Palisade. These are economical, annually renewing bulk licenses for both
network lab and laptop installation. Palisade offers a complimentary Live Web Training session to all instructors who order a Course License.
» Learn more

Student Versions from Palisade. These are 12-month versions available for purchase individually by students through either the Palisade web site or the school store.
» Learn more

Textbook Editions available bundled with textbooks.
These are time- and model-limited licenses.
» Learn more

Get DecisionTools Suite 6 for your course by contacting:

AddressPalisade Academic Sales    
800-432-7475 / 607-277-8000

@RISK I have used the @RISK software for about
      10 years now, and have found it
      extremely useful for constructing simple
      as well as moderately complex Monte
      Carlo simulation models. Using the tool, it
      has been possible to develop simulation
      models directly reflecting the
      epidemiological relationships relevant to
      the simulation problem without requiring
      computer programming skills.
Trial Versions

                                   Dr. Dirk Pfeffer,
                                   Royal Veterinary College,
                                   University of London

Teaching Tips & Examples

The DecisionTools Suite is a great way to present quantitative techniques in a straightforward, easy-to-understand way. Each month we feature an example or tip illustrating how students can gain "real world" benefits by implementing quantitative analysis.

Forecasting Income of a Major Corporation
Excerpted from Financial Models using Simulation and Optimization II, by Wayne Winston, published by Palisade

In many large corporations (GM is one example) different parts of a company makes forecasts for quarterly net income and an analyst in the CEO’s office pulls together the individual forecasts to create a forecast for the entire company’s net income. In this section we show an easy way to pool forecasts from different portions of a company and create a probabilistic forecast for the entire company. With such a forecast it is easy to answer questions such as, “What is the probability our quarterly net income will exceed $4 billion?”

Palisade Download the example spreadsheet and
    step-by-step instructions

Tech Tip of the Month

Bayesian Revision Command
The Bayesian Revision command in PrecisionTree “flips” a decision tree or sub-tree, using Bayes' rule to swap unconditional and conditional probabilities.

Bayes' rule is used to revise probabilities as you receive new information. You start with prior probabilities of various outcomes and conditional probabilities of information results, given outcomes. For example, in a tree where a person is being tested for drugs, you start with the prior probabilities of drug status (user or nonuser) and the conditional probabilities of test results (positive or negative), given drug status. However, in a decision-making context, where you will observe the test results before learning a person's drug status, it is useful to have the opposite probabilities: the unconditional probabilities of test results and the conditional (posterior) probabilities of drug status, given test results. These are found through Bayes' rule.

Bayesian revision requires a decision tree or sub-tree tree with chance nodes only and a symmetric structure. To perform a Bayesian Revision, right-click the root node of the decision tree or sub-tree you wish to revise. Typically you will accept the default Revised Node Order (this is the order of the nodes in the revised tree). When the Bayesian Revision is performed, the tree will "flip" to the revised node order. The probabilities in the flipped tree are calculated from Bayes' rule.

» See more in the PrecisionTree manual
» View a Bayesian Revision video

Textbook of the Month

The DecisionTools Suite is included in dozens of major textbooks, and is a key component of more titles every year. Authors use the DecisionTools Suite to illustrate key analytical concepts and build examples demonstrating the value of quantitative techniques in business, OR, and engineering.

Value-Added Decision Making for Managers by Kenneth Chelst and Yauvz Burak Canbolat

Developed from the authors’ longstanding course on decision and risk analysis, Value-Added Decision Making for Managers explores the important interaction between decisions and management action and clarifies the barriers to rational decision making. The authors analyze strengths and weaknesses of the best alternatives, enabling decision makers to improve on these alternatives by adding value and reducing risk.

» Learn more from the publisher
» See a list of books bundled with Palisade software

Featured White Paper

Professors, PhD candidates, practitioners and others often use the DecisionTools Suite as part of a complex analysis to address important problems. These analyses are published in white papers. Each month we will feature a different academic white paper addressing a wide range of issues.

Onion Production, Packing, and
Storage Feasibility on the Navajo
Indian Irrigation Project
Nate Lee, Constance L. Falk, William Gorman
New Mexico State University

The purpose of this study was to assess the feasibility of onion production, packing, and storage on the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project (NIIP) in northwestern New Mexico. This paper focuses on the results of both deterministic and stochastic financial analyses. Significant risk exists in projects such as this; price and yield in particular create uncertainty. Fixed or deterministic values, such as the mean price, can be replaced with prob-ability distributions that describe a range of possibilities. Prices and yields were selected as the stochastic input variables for the risk model. @RISK was used to conduct the stochastic simulations.

Palisade  Read the full paper here

Academic Live Webcast

Experts using Palisade software share examples and teaching tips. Register online at no charge.

The use of @RISK with an
Online Investment Portal

To be presented by Charlie Strout, Seven Shadow, LLC, Prudena
May 16, 2013, 11:00am EDT (Eastern Daylight Time)

In this complimentary live webcast, Charlie Stout will show how Prudena allows users to export their portfolios into Excel files that are formatted for use by @RISK to perform more advanced simulations and risk-management analysis. He will demonstrate how these easy-to-use tools give investors insights into their decisions and assist investors in developing a decision-making process that helps them to avoid common investing pitfalls--improving performance.

» Read more details about the webcast and register here
» See complete Webcast schedule


The Academic Global Leader in
Risk and Decision Analysis
Palisade is the world’s leading provider of risk and decision analysis software and solutions. Founded in 1984, its products @RISK and the DecisionTools Suite are used by over 95% of the Fortune 100, in nearly every industry around the world. Palisade is headquartered in New York State, and has offices in London, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro, and Tokyo.

What is The DecisionTools Suite?
The DecisionTools Suite is the world’s only integrated set of risk and decision analysis programs. The Suite includes @RISK for Monte Carlo simulation, PrecisionTree for decision trees, and TopRank for “what if” sensitivity analysis. In addition, DecisionTools Suite comes with StatTools for statistical analysis and forecasting, NeuralTools for predictive neural networks, and Evolver and RISKOptimizer for optimization. All programs work together seamlessly, and all integrate completely with Microsoft Excel for ease of use and maximum flexibility.

The Suite is offered in three affordable and flexible licensing options for those in academia: Student Versions, Course Licenses and Full Academic Versions.

» Schools using Palisade software
Textbooks using Palisade software

Story to Share?
How are you using Palisade software in your classroom, lab, or field work? Let us know by answering a few brief questions. Please send replies to

  • Your name, title, institute, and field of interest.
  • How long have you been using Palisade software?
  • Which Palisade software do you use in your class/lab/field work, and what is the course name (if applicable)?
  • What problem(s) do you address with the software?
  • How does Palisade software help you and your students?
  • Any other comments.

In This Issue

» Research at Curtin
   University of Technology
   Explores Tools for

» @RISK and DecisionTools
   Suite Now Available in
   Seven Languages

» @RISK and DecisionTools
   Suite Maintenance Update

» Recent School Adoptions

» Licensing Options

» Teaching Tips &

   Forecasting Income of a
   Major Corporation

» Tech Tip
   Bayesian Revision Command

» Textbook of the Month
   Value-Added Decision
   Making for Managers

» Featured White Paper
   Onion Production, Packing,
   and Storage Feasibility
   on the Navajo Indian
   Irrigation Project

» Academic Live Webcasts
   The use of @RISK with an
   Online Investment Portal

» About Palisade and the
   DecisionTools Suite

» Story to Share?

Keep in Touch

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a sales representative

2013 Palisade Risk Conferences
Plan now for the eighth Palisade Risk Conference series, to start in March next year in South America. More information about each conference to be announced soon.
» Santiago de Chile:
   19 March

» São Paulo: 21 March
» Johannesburg: 25 April
» Tokyo: 14 May
» Shanghai: 16 May
» London: 11 June
» Frankfurt: 13 June
» Las Vegas: 20-21 November


» Training Seminars
Auckland: 22-23 May
Sydney: 5-6 June
Perth: 19-20 June
Kuala Lumpur: 3-4 July
Melbourne: 17-18 July
Brisbane: 7-8 August
Adelaide: 21-22 August

São Paulo: 6 - 10 maio
Brasilia: 27 - 31 maio

Abu Dhabi: 14-16 May
London: 4-6 June
Paris: 10-12 June
London: 16-18 July

Latin America
Bogotá: 4-6 de junio

North America
New York, NY: 1-2 May
Houston: 8-9 May
Seattle: 15-16 May
St. Louis: 20-22 May
Detroit: 29-30 May
Calgary: 4-6 June
Portland: 11-12 June
New Orleans: 19-20 June
Toronto: 25-27 June
Cincinnati: 9-10 July
Houston: 16-18 July

» Live Web Training
Decision-Making and
Quantitative Risk Analysis
using @RISK

1-2 May, 9am-1pm ET
31 Oct. - 1 Nov., 1pm-5pm ET

15-16 May, 9am-1pm ET
14-15 Nov., 1pm-5pm ET

Decision-Making and
Quantitative Risk Analysis
using the DecisionTools Suite

11-12 July, 1pm-5pm ET
9-10 Dec., 9am-1pm ET

25-26 July, 1pm-5pm ET
19-20 Dec., 9am-1pm ET

Project Risk Assessment
using @RISK

18-19 Sept., 1pm-5pm ET

Trial Versions

Palisade software is available in fully functional trial versions. Try @RISK or any of our software today!

The DecisionTools Suite
The complete risk and
decision analysis toolkit

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