[op-er-too-niz-uh m, -tyoo-]


the policy or practice, as in politics, business, or one's personal affairs, of adapting actions, decisions, etc., to expediency or effectiveness regardless of the sacrifice of ethical principles.
action or judgment in accordance with this policy.

Nearby words

  1. oppidan,
  2. oppilate,
  3. opponency,
  4. opponent,
  5. opportune,
  6. opportunist,
  7. opportunistic,
  8. opportunistic infection,
  9. opportunity,
  10. opportunity cost

Origin of opportunism

1865–70; < Italian opportunismo, equivalent to opportun(o) (< Latin opportūnus; see opportune) + -ismo -ism

Related formsop·por·tun·ist, noun

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for opportunism

Word Origin and History for opportunism



"policy of adopting actions to circumstances while holding goals unchanged," 1870, from opportune + -ism. Cf. opportunist.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper