The use of empirical correlations relating one body of experimental data to another, with the objective of finding quantitative estimates of the factors underlying the phenomena involved. Correlation analysis in organic chemistry often uses linear free-energy relations for rates or equilibria of reactions, but the term also embraces similar analysis of physical (most commonly spectroscopic) properties and of biological activity.
See also: quantitative structure–activity relationships (QSAR)
PAC, 1994, 66, 1077. 'Glossary of terms used in physical organic chemistry (IUPAC Recommendations 1994)' on page 1101 (https://doi.org/10.1351/pac199466051077)