think tank


Definition of think tank 

: an institute, corporation, or group organized to study a particular subject (such as a policy issue or a scientific problem) and provide information, ideas, and advice an information technology think tank … was responsible for the armies of new political-action committees, lobbyists and rightward think tanks that poured into Washington to counter the consumer and environmental movements he helped to inspire.— Jonathan Rowe

Examples of think tank in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Why so many French people are unhappy with Macron Jeff Lightfoot, an expert on France at the Atlantic Council think tank in Washington, DC, told me last week there are two main reasons Macron has become such an unpopular figure. Alex Ward, Vox, "France’s anti-Macron protests are turning deadlier," 3 Dec. 2018 According to a report from regional urbanist think tank SPUR, 28 percent of new Bay Area office construction between 2010 and 2015 went up within half a mile of a transit line, and 75 percent of regional workers still drive to work. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "As top innovation hub expands, can straining local infrastructure keep pace?," 6 Nov. 2018 That’s the assessment from an arms control think tank, which believes China’s leaders are leaning toward basing their nuclear weapons at sea to prevent their destruction in a surprise attack. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "China Is Building More Nuclear-Armed Submarines," 24 Oct. 2018 Not every penny spent on persuading congresspeople has to be reported—and a lot of political activities, like think tank funding, don’t count as lobbying. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Fossil fuel lobbyists grossly outspend “Big Green”," 20 July 2018 The think tank says 29 percent of the public views police as enforcers, while only 8 percent of surveyed officers view themselves as enforcers. William Axford, Houston Chronicle, "A Texas deputy was fired for telling Instagram how cops 'really feel.' Now he's getting noticed.," 8 June 2018 According to Laurence Broers, an associate fellow at the Chatham House think tank's Russia and Eurasia program, discontent with Sargsyan had been brewing for years. Sheena Mckenzie, CNN, "Armenia in political turmoil after protest leader's bid for power is blocked," 2 May 2018 The plan to use the building for programs in four ASU schools, multiple think tanks, a policy journal, the university's federal lobbying operations and collaborative ventures. Rachel Leingang, azcentral, "Why ASU spent $35 million for a building 10 minutes from the White House," 20 Apr. 2018 The Institute for Government think tank sees a mechanism for Parliament to engineer another plebiscite later this year. Emma Ross-thomas,, "Brexit Bulletin: Second Referendum? Business Says No," 17 Apr. 2018

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

1958, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

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The first known use of think tank was in 1958

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More Definitions for think tank

think tank


English Language Learners Definition of think tank

: an organization that consists of a group of people who think of new ideas on a particular subject or who give advice about what should be done

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