cen·​tral·​ize | \ ˈsen-trə-ˌlīz How to pronounce centralize (audio) \
centralized; centralizing

Definition of centralize

intransitive verb

: to form a center : cluster around a center

transitive verb

1 : to bring to a center : consolidate centralize all the data in one file
2 : to concentrate by placing power and authority in a center or central organization centralized several functions in a single agency

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Other Words from centralize

centralization \ ˌsen-​trə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce centralization (audio) \ noun
centralizer \ ˈsen-​trə-​ˌlī-​zər How to pronounce centralizer (audio) \ noun

Examples of centralize in a Sentence

All shipping operations have been centralized at the Miami office. The controversial reforms could be used to further centralize power in the hands of one party.

Recent Examples on the Web

The report recommends the state centralize information about licenses, improve licensing processes for veterans and reduce barriers for licenses. Keith Ridler, The Seattle Times, "Idaho eyes changes to occupational licensing requirements," 23 Oct. 2018 And because dioceses operate relatively autonomously, a massive amount of legwork was needed to centralize and process that information. Tara Isabella Burton, Vox, "New Catholic sex abuse allegations show how long justice can take in a 16-year scandal," 24 Aug. 2018 Some of those food makers were unhappy that Whole Foods centralized purchasing and raised supplier fees, Mr. Green said. Heather Haddon, WSJ, "Natural Grocers Shrug Off Amazon-Whole Foods Threat," 26 Aug. 2018 But there is the danger that the costs will be so high that the university may have to centralize services, narrow its mission and become more like a polytechnic institute. Valerie Strauss, Washington Post, "Can liberal education survive at a scandal-plagued university? A professor explains why it must.," 1 May 2018 Republicans centralize more of their efforts at party headquarters, while Democrats are more splintered. Bill Barrow, The Seattle Times, "Top Democratic donors hear from rising stars ahead of 2020," 12 Dec. 2018 The chemicals maker is in the process of centralizing some of its accounting tasks in three main shared services centers in Mexico, China and the Netherlands. Nina Trentmann, WSJ, "Akzo Nobel Spinoff Nouryon Seeks Price Rises to Offset Higher Raw Material Costs," 24 Dec. 2018 Additionally, Smash action on the Switch is anchored to the bottom of the screen more often than on Wii U, which tended to centralize combat's vertical axis. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Smash Bros. Ultimate review: The best fighting game on any Nintendo system," 6 Dec. 2018 Wolosky said that officials in the Obama administration centralized the monitoring of former detainees in a high-level State Department office to prioritize problem-solving and reduce the risk that something would go wrong. Dionne Searcey And Charlie Savage, miamiherald, "Senegal eyes deporting ex-detainees as critics accuse U.S. of neglect | Miami Herald," 6 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'centralize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of centralize

1795, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Statistics for centralize

Last Updated

20 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for centralize

The first known use of centralize was in 1795

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More Definitions for centralize



English Language Learners Definition of centralize

: to bring (things that are in different places) together at a single point or place
: to bring (something) under the control of one authority


cen·​tral·​ize | \ ˈsen-trə-ˌlīz How to pronounce centralize (audio) \
centralized; centralizing

Kids Definition of centralize

: to bring to a central point or under a single control The school system centralized student records at the main office.

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Comments on centralize

What made you want to look up centralize? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a tendency to relapse

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