self-interest

noun self-in·ter·est \ ˌself-ˈin-t(ə-)rəst ; -ˈin-tə-ˌrest , -ˌtrest ; -ˈin-tərst \
|Updated on: 21 Aug 2018

Definition of self-interest

1 : a concern for one's own advantage and well-being
  • acted out of self-interest and fear
2 : one's own interest or advantage
  • self-interest requires that we be generous in foreign aid

self-interested

play \ˌself-ˈin-t(ə-)rə-stəd; -ˈin-tə-ˌre-, -ˈin-ˌtre-; -ˈin-tər-\ adjective

self-interestedly

adverb

self-interestedness

noun

SELF-INTEREST Defined for English Language Learners

self-interest

Definition of self-interest for English Language Learners

  • : concern only for getting what you want or need and not about what happens to other people

  • : your own interest or advantage



Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

requiring immediate aid or action

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet-pasta-spelling-help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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