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Initiative is part of the Academic Word List. It is important for students in college and university.





  1. (uncountable) If you have or take the initiative, you are in control and can decide what to do next.
    It's good to see someone take the initiative and start doing something about this problem.
    It appears that the army was acting on its own initiative and not on orders from the president.
  2. (uncountable) If you have initiative, you do things without needing to be told to do them.
    We're looking to hire somebody with initiative because I won't be able to supervise them much.
  3. (countable) An initiative is an effort to start doing something to solve a problem.
    The town has no new initiatives to deal with garbage.

Related words[change]