ide·a·tion | \ˌī-dē-ˈā-shən \

Definition of ideation 

: the capacity for or the act of forming or entertaining ideas suicidal ideation

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of ideation in a Sentence

caregivers are trained to watch for signs of depression and suicidal ideation—some patients are likely to put their fantasies to action

Recent Examples on the Web

According to one study, when transgender people are able to use their names in everyday life (and not called by their dead name), their risk of depression and suicidal ideation decreases. Caitlin Wolper, Teen Vogue, "Ontario Just Issued its First Non-Binary Birth Certificate," 8 May 2018 But some experts were concerned that a viewer who may be in a similar situation as Hannah, who has suicidal ideation, may feel discouraged by the show and shy away from talking to a parent, guardian, or counselor. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Here’s What 7 Mental Health Experts Really Think About ‘13 Reasons Why’," 9 May 2018 The trio will reportedly be surrounded by a group of people, selected by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, who have experienced suicidal ideations or lost someone to death by suicide. Andrea Park, Teen Vogue, "Khalid, Alessia Cara, and Logic Will Stand With People Affected by Suicide During Grammys Performance," 10 Jan. 2018 The offices also include a game room with classic arcade titles and the latest gaming consoles, as well as an ideation room to fuel creativity, complete with relaxed lounge furniture and a library of inspiring books and periodicals. Dave Brooks, Billboard, "Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment Rebrands to BSE Global," 7 June 2018 The most worrisome of all to Orloff are apps offering help for people experiencing suicide ideation or seeking anxiety release hypnosis. Ken Alltucker, Alex Connor And Jayne O'donnell, USA TODAY, "Mobile therapy apps: With suicide rates on the rise, can text chats rescue those on the edge?," 15 June 2018 The number of teens hospitalized for suicide ideation or suicide attempts nearly doubled between 2008 and 2015, with the highest increase seen in adolescent girls, a study found. Alexandria Hein, Fox News, "Suicide attempts increasing among American high school kids, study finds," 16 May 2018 There are still times when the depression hammers down and months vanish out from under me, when the suicidal ideation returns. Keith Gessen, The New Yorker, "The Silence: The Legacy of Childhood Trauma," 10 Apr. 2018 In a new interview with Variety, the actor opened up with his past experiences with suicidal ideation. Brittney Mcnamara, Teen Vogue, "Justin Prentice Opened Up About Having Suicidal Ideation When He Was Young," 19 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of ideation

1818, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ideation

Statistics for ideation

Last Updated

6 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ideation

The first known use of ideation was in 1818

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ideation



Financial Definition of ideation

What It Is

Ideation is the act of forming ideas.

How It Works

For example, let's say Company XYZ makes widgets, and it wants to get into the children's widget market. Its product development team starts brainstorming ideas for specs, features and production methods.

This ideation process includes listing possible product features, designing prototypes, manufacturing prototypes, doing market research, and going back to square one with various iterations until something marketable and profitable emerges.

In a purely marketing context, ideation might involve creating an image board or concept for advertising.

Why It Matters

Ideation is what many business people spend a significant time doing. Without creativity, experimentation and dreaming, businesses would be far less innovative and thus far less profitable.

Source: Investing Answers


ide·a·tion | \ˌīd-ē-ˈā-shən \

Medical Definition of ideation 

: the capacity for or the act of forming or entertaining ideas suicidal ideation

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on ideation

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


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!