Definition of incentive in English:


Syllabification: in·cen·tive
Pronunciation: /inˈsen(t)iv


1A thing that motivates or encourages one to do something: there is no incentive for customers to conserve water
More example sentences
  • Childcare grants are among a range of incentives geared at encouraging more parents to run for district council seats.
  • York residents are set to be offered incentives to encourage them to recycle more of their household waste.
  • As well as the natural health benefits, the patient also gets motivation and incentives for better health.
incitement, goad, provocation;
attraction, lure, bait
informal carrot, sweetener, come-on
1.1A payment or concession to stimulate greater output or investment: tax incentives for investing in depressed areas [as modifier]: incentive payments
More example sentences
  • The government also gave generous tax incentives for investment.
  • In addition to federal tax credits, California offered an additional state tax incentive for wind energy production.
  • To improve its on-time arrival rates, further financial incentives were provided monthly.


late Middle English: from Latin incentivum 'something that sets the tune or incites', from incantare 'to chant or charm'.

Definition of incentive in: