noun[usually treated as singular] US informal
An experimental laboratory or department of a company or institution, typically smaller than and independent of its main research division: this wasn’t a short-staffed skunkworks, these were the top research managers the most successful collection of such skunkworks cannot alone propel the growth of a large company [as modifier]: this was a real skunkworks project
More example sentences
- Now, thanks to a combination of a skunkworks project within Google, and an enterprising Java developer, Google has done much to close the gap.
- Our multimedia skunkworks has experimented with file recovery programs that restore deleted images on removable media.
- Another drawback of the skunkworks approach is that it may create a climate of us and them.
1970s: allegedly from an association with the Skonk Works, an illegal still in the 'Li'l Abner' comic strip.
Definition of skunkworks in:
- The US English dictionary