technocrat

noun
tech·​no·​crat | \ ˈtek-nə-ˌkrat How to pronounce technocrat (audio) \

Definition of technocrat

1 : an adherent of technocracy
2 : a technical expert especially : one exercising managerial authority

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Did You Know?

In 1919 W. H. Smyth coined the term technocracy to mean basically "management of society by technical experts". Technocracy grew into a movement during the Great Depression of the 1930s, when politicians and financial institutions were being blamed for the economic disaster, and fans of technocracy claimed that letting technical experts manage the country would be a great improvement. (They also suggested that dollars could be replaced by "energy certificates" representing energy units called ergs.) Today technocrat and technocratic are still popular words for experts with a highly rational and scientific approach to public policy issues. But these experts aren't always the best politicians, and when a terrific technological solution to a problem is opposed by a powerful group or industry, lawmakers find it easier to just ignore it.

Examples of technocrat in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

This brand of feelings-first politics drives ideologues and technocrats bananas, but corresponds to how most people think about politics and political leadership — in terms of group identity and affiliation. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Joe Biden is leading the 2020 polls. Here’s what he thinks about policy.," 18 Dec. 2018 For most of his presidency Mr. Macron, a former investment banker and technocrat groomed at France’s elite academies, shunned public debate in favor of backroom negotiations to pass sweeping overhauls. Noemie Bisserbe, WSJ, "France’s Macron, Astride the Globe, Overlooked Swelling Anger at Home," 7 Dec. 2018 But his rise from unknown technocrat to a popular senator and now president has been extraordinarily rapid, propelled in large part by the support of his mentor, Uribe. Manuel Rueda, Fox News, "Incoming Colombia president faces long list of challenges," 7 Aug. 2018 But his rise from unknown technocrat to a popular senator and now president has been extraordinarily rapid, propelled in large part by the support of his mentor, Uribe. Manuel Rueda, The Seattle Times, "Incoming Colombia president faces long list of challenges," 6 Aug. 2018 Ahmed forced out long-serving EPRDF elites, and enabled young public servants and technocrats to rise into key posts within his administration. Yohannes Y. Gedamu, Washington Post, "Did someone try to assassinate Ethiopia’s new prime minister? Here’s what you need to know.," 26 June 2018 Yet, politically Mr Putin needs these technocrats to preserve a system in which entitlements, privileges and rents are allocated not according to law or merit but by access to resources and by position in the social hierarchy. The Economist, "A new generation is rising in Russia," 22 Mar. 2018 The chaotic public sector’s staffing level has shrunk considerably under the diktat of technocrats from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund. Nektaria Stamouli, WSJ, "Greek Bailout Ends, But Underlying Problems Remain," 21 Aug. 2018 China could have waited for Western technocrats to fiddle around on the margins until the same cost reductions were achieved, but who knows how long that would have taken. David Roberts, Vox, "China made solar panels cheap. Now it’s doing the same for electric buses.," 24 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'technocrat.' 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 technocrat

1932, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

13 Feb 2019

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The first known use of technocrat was in 1932

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More Definitions for technocrat

technocrat

noun

English Language Learners Definition of technocrat

: a scientist or technical expert who has a lot of power in politics or industry

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More from Merriam-Webster on technocrat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with technocrat

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Nglish: Translation of technocrat for Spanish Speakers

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