(redirected from prognostications)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Legal.
Related to prognostications: daunting, scimitar

Prognostication (Prognosis)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Astrological prognostication refers to astrological prediction, although prognosis is more accurate for what astrologers actually do. If the future were rigidly fated, then, no matter what anyone did, only one future would be possible. Given this assumption, one should be able to predict the future. The term prognostication, however, does not imply a rigidly fated future. Instead, the term seems to suggest that human willpower can, within certain limits, change the future. Like a weather reporter, an astrologer can only predict upcoming conditions. Whether or not one chooses to go for a picnic on a day a meteorologist predicts rain—or on a day an astrologer advises staying at home—is a matter of personal will.



(also prognostics), in a broad sense, the theory and practice of forecasting; in a narrow sense, the science of the rules and methods for elaborating a forecast.

These definitions have been associated with the term “prognostication” since the mid-1960’s, when the first scientific reports appeared on the theoretical problems in the specific forecasting of social phenomena.

The foundation for the general methodology of prognostication was laid by K. Marx, F. Engels, and V. I. Lenin. Prognostic research developed in the natural sciences (initially in agrohydrometeorology). In the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th, prognostic research was introduced in the social sciences (particularly economics), resulting in the development of prognostication as a special scientific discipline. The development of prognostication as the theory of forecasting has been interconnected with the development of theories of scientific prediction, goal setting, planning, programming, projecting, and management.

The main task of prognostication is the elaboration of a specific methodology of forecasting, in order to improve the effectiveness of the methods and techniques of working out forecasts. Among the problems studied by prognostication are the distinctive traits of forecasting as a specialized form of scientific research, the principles underlying the structure and optimum combination of various methods of forecasting, the methods of evaluating the reliability of forecasts, and the principles for using the results of probability theory, game theory, operations research, and decision-making theory in elaborating forecasts.

There are two branches of prognostication—general (theoretical) and specific (applied). The applied branches are components of both general prognostication and particular scientific disciplines (medical, biological, economic, and demographic forecasting, for example). Especially in the social sciences and in social forecasting, the applied branches of prognostication form intricately interrelated systems.

The discipline of prognostication, which is still developing, has played an important role in perfecting the methods of forecasting. However, many of the problems in prognostication have been insufficiently elaborated.


Gvishiani, D. M., and V. A. Lisichkin. Prognostika. Moscow, 1968.
Filosofiia i prognostika. Moscow, 1971. (Translated from German.)
Lisichkin, V. A. Teoriia i praktika prognostiki. Moscow, 1972.


References in periodicals archive ?
Book or table containing such items as a calendar of the days, weeks, and months of the year; a register of ecclesiastical festivals and saints' days; and a record of various astronomical phenomena, often with weather prognostications and seasonal suggestions for farmers.
IRVINE - Cal State Fullerton coach Bob Burton is the resident jokester in the Big West Conference, but there was nothing funny about Wednesday's prognostications.
The revised prognostications for the next three days are as follows:
In the context of the Ant Farm retrospective, however, the work begins to read a little differently, confirming the continued relevance of the group's futuristic prognostications.
Soon, however, Netscape Navigator emerged and the Internet and the Web began to grow exponentially, along with the number of users, the wild prognostications about its importance, the number of pimpled millionaires it created, and so on.
The unique "art concert" provided entertainment for the thousands of shareholders who were waiting in the early hours before the doors opened at Qwest Center Omaha for their annual meeting and Buffett's awaited prognostications for the financial future.
We already knew that Pole's long-term companion Advise Priuli made use of astrological prognostications, if only every once in a while, but Carnesecchi seems to have relied on it heavily, especially but not exclusively in the case of papal conclaves.
Known as the Strategy Diva, Cynthia Cohen is a widely sought after speaker and authority on consumer trends who combines consumer insights and prognostications with realistic business implications and market strategies.
Then he pulled on a protective pad for his sore right shoulder and donned his road jersey, simultaneously energizing his team and making a mockery of the team's medical prognostications.
Based on very early prognostications, Oklahoma and Ohio State will converge on the Jan.