the state or quality of being external to or outside someone or something; the fact of being outer, outward, or on the surface: A child just learning to speak already has a sense of the externality of the world.
something external; an outward feature, or all outward features considered together: One can be too preoccupied with the externalities of religion.
excessive attention to external or outward features; superficiality: The article explores the externality of identity in a world of media-constructed self-image.
a side effect of some process or activity, especially a negative effect of an economic activity that is not accounted for in the price of what is produced: Externalities such as air pollution are sometimes eliminated through government regulation.They argue that there is an externality from breeding new pets, as the cute babies crowd out older pets.
- non·ex·ter·nal·i·ty, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use externality in a sentence
Animal meat gets to externalize a lot of its negatives — externalities like health care, ecological, worker welfare, animal welfare.Impossible Foods’ plant-based meat just got closer to the price of regular meat | Kelsey Piper | February 2, 2021 | Vox
I think noise is one of the oldest externalities that we’ve had to deal with, and it is a natural byproduct of a lot of things that you want to do.
If these externalities hadn’t been acknowledged, perhaps we’d still be coughing in smoke-filled workplaces, planes, and restaurants.Thank you for posting: Smoking’s lessons for regulating social media | Bobbie Johnson | October 5, 2020 | MIT Technology Review
Instead, technology companies must address the negative externalities of unchecked conspiracy theories and misinformation and redesign their products so that this content reaches fewer people.Thank you for posting: Smoking’s lessons for regulating social media | Bobbie Johnson | October 5, 2020 | MIT Technology Review
In any case, there is a growing concern in many quarters over the externalities of meat production.
The externality, the pompousness of intention, the theatrical postures, was part of the romantic constitution.Musical Portraits | Paul Rosenfeld
There was in it a certain quality of externality that gained edge from the contrast with Mrs. Venables' all-reaching intimacy.The Furnace | Rose Macaulay
Hence, while he does not altogether avoid the poet as a character, his poets are drawn with a curious externality and detachment.Robert Browning | C. H. Herford
This superficiality or at least externality of relations is the source of actual conflict.The Psychology of Nations | G.E. Partridge
Is not all this semblance of externality in things a blessed foil to spiritual activity?Soliloquies in England | George Santayana
British Dictionary definitions for externality
the state or condition of being external
philosophy the quality of existing independently of a perceiving mind
an economic effect that results from an economic choice but is not reflected in market prices
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012