Letter | Published:

Validity of Prediction based on Cross-Sectional Analysis

Naturevolume 192pages13181319 (1961) | Download Citation



CROSS-SECTIONAL analysis, by means of which is investigated the behaviour of a cross-section of the population at a given point in time, is a convenient method in many fields of research where age or maturational differences are of interest. Implicit in the findings of such investigations are predictions about the future behaviour of the groups concerned. Such predictions are, however, based on the assumption that the behavioural differences between groups are due to the age differences involved, and that future age changes will bring about similar behavioural differences. The fallibility of such predictions in the field of demography has been pointed out1. This investigation is aimed at checking similar findings in the field of absence behaviour in an industrial situation.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    Medawar, P. B., The Future of Man (Methuen, London, 1960).

  2. 2

    Buzzard, R. B., and Shaw, W. J., Brit. J. Indust. Med., 9, No. 4 (1952).

  3. 3

    Behrend, H., Intern. Labour Rev., 79, No. 2 (1959).

Download references

Author information


  1. Medical Research Council Industrial Psychology Research Unit, Psychology Department, University College, London, W.C.1

    •  & R. SERGEAN


  1. Search for GWYNNETH DE LA MARE in:

  2. Search for R. SERGEAN in:

About this article

Publication history

Issue Date




By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.