Definition of competition in English:



  • 1[mass noun] The activity or condition of striving to gain or win something by defeating or establishing superiority over others.

    ‘there is fierce competition between banks’
    ‘the competition for university places is greater than ever this year’
    • ‘The family atmosphere and the great competition make these events something very special.’
    • ‘The competition for attention works both ways in the relationship between governments and the populations they serve.’
    • ‘A posse of policemen should be appointed to check the scorching pace as well as competition between private buses.’
    • ‘A continuing pressure on French producers is the competition from American and Australian vineyards.’
    • ‘Young wasn't aware of any tendering or competition for the contract.’
    • ‘The firm received $240,000 for its work, facing no competition for the contract.’
    • ‘As a result, competition between developers is likely to lead to a higher standard of finish in industrial buildings.’
    • ‘Its development comes after years of public squabbling as competition from events in other British cities has grown.’
    • ‘Technology has become fashionable and with global market pressures, competition for new advances has never been higher.’
    • ‘If the three branches provided the same or similar function, competition between them could arise.’
    • ‘In any event, competition, and the hiring away of key employees, continued apace.’
    • ‘These days, there is too much competition for menial work and too few opportunities.’
    • ‘Its entry into the Irish market is expected to heat up competition here, particularly in terms of home loans and current accounts.’
    • ‘Some of the constituencies may be hotly contested and therefore, competition is likely to be stiff.’
    • ‘TV stations ought to refrain from excessive competition for ratings.’
    • ‘Seventeen teams, one of the largest number of entries for many years, participated and competition was very keen.’
    • ‘They want selective competition - competition for others but not for themselves.’
    • ‘The presence of these international competitors makes it likely that competition for future contracts will remain active.’
    • ‘He said the competition in his field forced him to keep improving his work.’
    • ‘The boom in India's tech industry also means stiff competition for good software developers.’
    rivalry, competitiveness, vying, contesting, opposition, contention, conflict, feuding, battling, fighting, struggling, strife, war
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    1. 1.1[count noun]An event or contest in which people take part in order to establish superiority or supremacy in a particular area.
      ‘a beauty competition’
      • ‘All team competitions were a round robin affair with each team playing the other once.’
      • ‘Similarly, now is the time to start thinking about the next round of skills competitions.’
      • ‘I have never been a great supporter of weblog competitions, as any regular reader of my site will tell you.’
      • ‘This is the first robot event where all major types of robot competitions will be held at the same time.’
      • ‘No other event had so much fun as the three competitions for the children below age six.’
      • ‘Particularly if, as a member of this squad, he wins one of the biggest competitions in the world in his field.’
      • ‘We all go to Sydney's events and competitions so she has all the support she needs.’
      • ‘There will be competitions for pupils and an awards ceremony at the end of the day as well as exhibitions by local firms.’
      • ‘There are levels of hospitality appropriate for different competitions and events.’
      • ‘For the Hammers, it was their first away win in eight games in all competitions.’
      • ‘He said it is also one of the only competitions that operates across the island of Ireland.’
      • ‘This season she has not lost a match and just dropped two games in Irish competitions.’
      • ‘Denise, who has won many top prizes in cat photography competitions, said this one was special to her.’
      • ‘They went to international competitions to take on other nations' breakfasts.’
      • ‘I get a thrill from racing them in competitions but I have no interest in them mechanically.’
      • ‘They have done well in some very difficult matches in knockout competitions this season.’
      • ‘I'd like to play in competitions where every game you can play against the best players of the world.’
      • ‘From an early age, she took him and his sister to the theatre and to festivals where they took part in competitions.’
      • ‘What's the point of producing red wine that wins competitions if no one wants to drink it?’
      • ‘Attractions will include painting and colouring competitions and balloon races.’
      contest, tournament, match, game, round, heat, fixture, event, meet, encounter
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    2. 1.2[in singular]The person or people over whom one is attempting to establish one's supremacy or superiority; the opposition.
      ‘I walked round to check out the competition’
      • ‘Jessica flicked the page over and checked out the competition.’
      • ‘Just be careful that you don't pan to the left or right to check out the competition.’
      • ‘Some, outside Scottish football, underestimate the competition.’
      • ‘For the latter, it is a case of ensuring the customer is aware of the service and is attracted to using it as opposed to the competition.’
      • ‘Italy had alerted the competition to their presence by winning all three group matches.’
      • ‘We'll be showing more international cricket than all the competition put together, they said.’
      • ‘But if not, at least get over there, check out the competition, and link someone, okay?’
      • ‘The company works ruthlessly to destroy any competition before the competition even gets a chance to mount a challenge in the marketplace.’
      opposition, opposing side, other side, other team, field, enemy, foe
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    3. 1.3Ecology Interaction between animal or plant species, or individual organisms, that are attempting to gain a share of a limited environmental resource.
      ‘competition with ungulates or condylarths appears to have been the undoing of marsupials in North America’
      • ‘In the present study, small individuals of this species died in competition with large ones in field trials.’
      • ‘In prehistoric times, natural disasters and competition with other species were the main causes.’
      • ‘This assumption has not been tested for plants growing in competition with one another.’
      • ‘For example, if one finds reduced nesting success, is it due to competition with an exotic species for a nest site?’
      • ‘Plant and animal competition is most marked on fertile soils of eutrophic forests and grasslands.’


Early 17th century: from late Latin competitio(n-) rivalry, from competere strive for (see compete).