or Nim·by

[ usually nim-bee ]

  1. not in my backyard: used to express opposition by local citizens to the locating in their neighborhood of a civic project, as a jail, garbage dump, or drug rehabilitation center, that, though needed by the larger community, is considered unsightly, dangerous, or likely to lead to decreased property values.

Origin of NIMBY

First recorded in 1980–85

Other words from NIMBY

  • Nim·by·ism, noun

Words Nearby NIMBY Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use NIMBY in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for NIMBY


/ (ˈnɪmbɪ) /

n acronym for
  1. not in my back yard: a person who objects to the occurrence of something if it will affect him or her or take place in his or her locality

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

Cultural definitions for NIMBY


Acronym for “Not In My Back Yard.” A term for a person who resists unwanted development, such as manufacturing plants, prisons, power companies, or chemical companies in his or her own neighborhood or town.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.