From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishpossibilitypos‧si‧bil‧i‧ty /ˌpɒsəˈbɪləti $ ˌpɑː-/ ●●● S2 W2 noun (plural possibilities) 1 [countable, uncountable]POSSIBLE if there is a possibility that something is true or that something will happen, it might be true or it might happen There’s always a possibility that he might go back to Seattle. the possibility of an enemy attack There was no possibility of changing the voting procedure. A peace settlement now looks like a real possibility. Tomorrow, there’s a remote possibility of snow on high ground. They might get married – it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility. The study raises the possibility that dieting is bad for your health.2 [countable usually plural]CHANCE/OPPORTUNITY an opportunity to do something, or something that can be done or triedpossibilities for/of (doing) something exciting possibilities for reducing costs Archer began to explore the possibilities of opening a club in the city. The US has not yet exhausted all diplomatic possibilities (=tried everything possible). the range of possibilities offered to students3 → have possibilitiesCOLLOCATIONS – Meaning 1: if there is a possibility that something is true or that something will happen, it might be true or it might happenadjectivesa strong/good possibility (=something that is very likely)There is a strong possibility that the drug causes similar damage in humans.a real possibility (=something that is quite likely)At this moment, a recession is a real possibility.a distinct possibility (=something that is quite likely)I knew there was a distinct possibility that I might fail my degree.a remote/faint possibility (=something that is not very likely)There's no point worrying about such a remote possibility.verbsa possibility existsThe possibility exists that he misunderstood the data.something remains a possibilityWar remains a possibility.consider a possibilityPolice in Glasgow are considering the possibility that the death may be drug-related.raise a possibility (=say or show that something may happen or may be true)The government has raised the possibility of an early election next year.rule out/exclude a possibility (=say that something will definitely not happen or is definitely not true)We can't rule out the possibility that there will be more redundancies.phrasesthere is a possibility thatThere is a possibility that files could be lost if the system crashes. COLLOCATIONS – Meaning 2: an opportunity to do something, or something that can be done or triedverbsconsider a possibility (=think about whether you should take an opportunity)We even began to consider the possibility of moving there permanently.explore a possibility (=think carefully and find out about an opportunity)You may want to explore the possibility of setting up your own business.offer a possibility (=make an opportunity available)Technology offers exciting possibilities to designers.open up a possibility (=make a new opportunity available)His recent performance opens up the possibility for him to compete in the Olympic Games.exhaust the possibilities (=try everything possible)I was determined not to give up until I had exhausted all the possibilities.adjectivesnew possibilitiesNew possibilities lay before him.exciting possibilitiesThe city offers many exciting possibilities for young people.tremendous possibilities (=very good or important opportunities)This discovery opens up tremendous possibilities for cancer screening.
Examples from the Corpuspossibility• Unless there is some change in the economy, there is a possibility that the plant may close.• We need to investigate all possibilities for helping these children.• There's a distinct possibility that there will be another earthquake.• Computers have opened up many exciting possibilities.• There is still a faint possibility that Sarah will be found safe and well.• I just listened, there was absolutely no possibility of influencing her.• There was no possibility now that she could capsize: built with positive buoyancy, she was incapable of sinking.• Voice input and output offer possibilities which are only beginning to be explored.• One possibility is to offer him more money.• A Republican victory in next month's elections now seems to be a real possibility.• We know this individual pulled the trigger, but there are several possibilities as to who was actually responsible.• Howard by his belief in original sin, guilt and the possibility of awakening man's consciousness of sin.• We are considering the possibility of providing a new class for advanced students.• We could not ignore the possibility of an enemy attack.• Instrument flight means the possibility of flying in all weather conditions.• Care must be taken to ensure that the possibility of a sale is not disclosed to the client's staff.• It is interesting to reflect upon the possibility that a meteorite-sized chunk of cometary material might survive its fall to Earth.• The possibilities for improvement are endless.raises the possibility• But the muse's intervention also raises the possibility of abandoning poetry altogether.• And beyond these individuals, it raises the possibility of a Republican Party, tolerant and moderate, for the modern age.• Confrontation only creates the possibility for drama when it raises the possibility of change.• This raises the possibility of an employee with a shareholding being allowed to enforce the section 309 duty derivatively.• This raises the possibility of future therapeutic manipulation.• This raises the possibility that any effect of risk may operate only within individual junctions and not across all junctions.• This raises the possibility that global warming may be a contributing factor.possibilities offered• Expanding haulage firms, however, seem largely to have neglected the possibilities offered by a franchising arrangement.• The possibilities offered in the introduction of knowledge based systems are enormous.