- having the power of producing; generative; creative: a productive effort.
- producing readily or abundantly; fertile: a productive vineyard.
- causing; bringing about (usually followed by of): conditions productive of crime and sin.
- Economics. producing or tending to produce goods and services having exchange value.
- Grammar. (of derivational affixes or patterns) readily used in forming new words, as the suffix -ness.
- (in language learning) of or relating to the language skills of speaking and writing (opposed to receptive).
Origin of productive
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for unproductive
As many expected, the talks were unproductive, but massive crowds gathered to watch the televised debate at the protest sites.Chinese Tourists Are Taking Hong Kong Protest Selfies
October 23, 2014
Software patents have become a source of unproductive litigation that entrenches large tech companies and inhibits creativity.It's Time to Update Reaganomics
February 18, 2013
That fat turned out to be bloated and unproductive dealerships.Romney Attacks Obama Over ‘Public’ Equity Job Slashing
May 29, 2012
If the next Congress finds rules from the last Congress to be outdated or unproductive, members can tear them up and start over.No Labels, a Nonpartisan Group, Unveils Its Plan to Fix Congress
December 12, 2011
It is now completely predictable and unproductive to any sober national-security debate.Obama's Nuclear Victory
September 24, 2009
It still encumbered the south wall with its unproductive branches.Howards End
E. M. Forster
The lobsterman made other attempts at conversation, but they were unproductive.The Depot Master
Joseph C. Lincoln
Unproductive opinions were nothing to her now, especially in Addington.The Prisoner
The little cruising that had been done had been unproductive of results.The Naval History of the United States
Willis J. Abbot.
Poor Polly Perkins was a sad example of the unproductive consumer.Molly Brown's Orchard Home
- (often foll by of) not productive of (anything)
- not producing goods and services with exchange value
- producing or having the power to produce; fertile
- yielding favourable or effective results
- producing or capable of producing goods and services that have monetary or exchange valueproductive assets
- of or relating to such productionthe productive processes of an industry
- (postpositive foll by of) resulting inproductive of good results
- denoting an affix or combining form used to produce new words
Word Origin and History for unproductive
1610s, from French productif (16c.) and directly from Medieval Latin productivus "fit for production," from Latin product-, past participle stem of producere (see produce (v.)). Related: Productively; productiveness.
- Producing or capable of producing mucus or sputum.
- Forming new tissue, as of an inflammation.