Which word should I use to say that " A is trying to prove B's prediction wrong"? For example, in the recent United Nations water scarcity report, UN predicted that in 10 years from now, two-thirds of the world population will be facing severe fresh water scarcity problem. We people have to prove that UN's prediction is wrong (of course, one has to wait for 10 years to see whether the prediction became true or not).

Before that, what word should I use in the below context?

To disprove the UN's prediction, we have to build desalination plants.


To prevent the UN's prediction, we have to ....


To invalidate the UN's prediction, we have to ...

or please suggest a better word(s).

click here for word reference.

  • Contradict : (to assert the opposite of a statement or idea put forward by someone) is often associated with predictions books.google.com/ngrams/… – user66974 Sep 16 '15 at 8:32
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    Are you asking for a term to describe activity that attempts to show the prediction was incorrect, or are you asking for a term to describe the activity taken to deflect, avoid or minimise the consequences of the prediction once it has been assumed to be correct? – Marv Mills Sep 16 '15 at 8:53
  • @Josh61- Thankyou for suggesting the word 'Contradict'. It suits my requirements. – Sivani Sep 17 '15 at 0:36
  • @MarvMills- To CONTRADICT united nation's predictions, .... I was looking for a better word in place of CONTRADICT. Thank you – Sivani Sep 17 '15 at 0:39
  • To contravene the UN's prediction, [...] related – Phil Sweet Jul 14 '16 at 2:11

You could try refute:-

  1. To prove to be false or erroneous; overthrow by argument or proof [American Heritage Dictionary via the Free Dictionary]

although the force of this word is somewhat diluted due its to the common use to mean deny. You would say, "we refuted the prediction by experiment xyz".


This question is confusing and appears to be asking for two different things. The text appears to be asking for wording that shows people are attempting to show that the original prediction was wrong but the examples appear to be saying that if the prediction is accepted then what term describes the actions taken as a result. I have chosen to answer the latter.

'Mitigate' can be used in this context:

verb (used with object), mitigated, mitigating.

1 - to lessen in force or intensity, as wrath, grief, harshness, or pain; moderate.

2 - to make less severe: to mitigate a punishment.

For example:

To mitigate the UN's prediction, we have to build desalination plants.

To mitigate the UN's prediction, we have to....

  • Nice get-out clause (+1). You first make it clear which of the possible questions you are answering and then answer it. I wish more people would do this rather than assuming they know better than the OP or blasting them in comments/downvotes. – chasly - supports Monica Sep 16 '15 at 12:37
  • Thanks. It's tiresome to have to do though, I doubt I would take such trouble more than once a day... – Marv Mills Sep 16 '15 at 13:10
  • So far, my approach has been to politely ask the OP for clarification in a comment. The problem with that is that other people come in and simply don't wait for the OP to answer. I get frustrated about that. I think your method could save a whole lot of guesses and allow the OP to improve their question. I'm still on the fence about this but I might try your method to see what happens. – chasly - supports Monica Sep 16 '15 at 13:14

Falsify - to demonstrate a theory to be false.



to prevent (something) from happening


Although not an exact fit, I think forestall is best here. Strictly speaking, it is the predicted water shortage that you are forestalling, and not the prediction itself; but I think the meaning is clear.

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