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  1. Quantum multireference effects are associated with degeneracies and near-degeneracies of the ground state and are critical to a variety of systems. Most approximate functionals of density functional theory (DFT) fail to properly describe such effects. A number of diagnostics have been proposed to estimate in advance the reliability of a given single-reference solution in this respect. Some of these diagnostics, however, lack size-consistency while remaining computationally expensive. In this work, we propose the DFT method of atomic populations of effectively localized electrons (APELE) as a novel diagnostic in this vein. It is compared with existing diagnostics of nondynamic correlation on select exemplary systems. The APELE method is on average in good agreement with the popular T1 index, while being size-consistent and less costly. It becomes particularly informative in cases involving bond stretching or bond breaking. The APELE method is applied next to organic diradicals like the bis-acridine dimer and the p-quinodimethane molecule which possess unusually high nonlinear optical response, and to the reaction of ethylene addition to Ni dithiolene. Our results for this reaction are consistent with the T1 diagnostics and in addition, shed some light on the degree of d-electron localization at the Ni center. 
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  2. null (Ed.)