Definition of communication in English:



  • 1The imparting or exchanging of information or news.

    ‘direct communication between the two countries will produce greater understanding’
    ‘at the moment I am in communication with London’
    • ‘We are in communication with owners, prospective purchasers and the local community.’
    • ‘Obviously, we're in communication with the London authorities and trying to understand what the facts are.’
    • ‘He expected a decision in the matter shortly and would be in communication with the school authorities as soon as possible.’
    • ‘‘We firmly believe that theatre is an effective medium of communication,’ said the spokesperson of the organisation.’
    • ‘We are in communication with the museum quite regularly and are hoping the application will be passed.’
    • ‘Thus it is possible to protect the intellectual property of online material and to support confidential exchange of communication between students.’
    • ‘I have recently done some traveling and every day I am in communication with people from all over the world.’
    • ‘I shall use the same medium of communication as I believe that the information I give will reach the wider public.’
    • ‘An agent, who I have been in communication with for a while now, managed to come and see the play and is considering signing me onto his books.’
    • ‘Languages were flawless and they were just mediums of interaction and communication, he added.’
    • ‘Sure, we've not only sent out letters as I've said, we visit them, we're in communication with them.’
    • ‘Strangely she's the only one who isn't in communication with the rest of us.’
    • ‘We can confirm that we have been in communication with the applicant and have responded fully to any concerns raised by her.’
    • ‘Fong said the foreigners must now be able to understand or speak either one of the two languages in order to help in communication with local employers.’
    • ‘She said that with regard to the recent bird flu cases in Thailand, Hong Kong needed to be on the alert, aware and in communication with the mainland and other neighbouring countries.’
    • ‘If there were survivors on the raft, why haven't we heard from them, and what relationship do they have with Elian and his family, and are they in communication with each other?’
    • ‘Therefore, physicians must provide more time for these patients to enhance communication and foster information exchange.’
    • ‘Simple improvements such as good direct communication between the receiving hospital and the ambulance crew have yet to be achieved.’
    • ‘Effective communication encourages routine exchange of data and information.’
    • ‘Because I'm currently in communication with some producers about being on one.’
    transmission, imparting, conveying, reporting, presenting, passing on, handing on, relay, conveyance, divulgence, divulgation, disclosure
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    1. 1.1A letter or message containing information or news.
      • ‘News, views and communications can be interesting and revealing.’
      • ‘The tenor of these personal communications was reflected in letters to newspapers and by the anchor men on call back radio who invited their listeners to take sides over Dr. Ashrawi's selection.’
      • ‘In an email communication he quoted to me the following.’
      • ‘‘We do communications, messaging and distribution,’ said Moloney.’
      • ‘While it will be relatively straightforward to inform employees of monitoring, it will be more difficult to inform those sending communications from outside.’
      • ‘Finally, I get very few postal mail communications from merchants.’
      • ‘Such messages may be brief notes, communications like traditional letters, or electronic files.’
      • ‘Mary told the meeting she had also received a lot of communications about this planning application and confirmed that there were many people very much against the proposed mast.’
      • ‘He began communicating a year ago sending packages and communications to local media and to the police.’
      • ‘Important visitors, messages and communications from overseas can be expected.’
      • ‘Businesses depend upon e-mail for basic communications and transfer of information.’
      • ‘But Downing Street last night insisted any communications received by him had no bearing on his appointments to the government benches, which were made on merit.’
      • ‘By working over distributed areas, IT can bring remote offices back into the content fold and make sure to produce consistent messages and communications.’
      • ‘Fourth, they won unusually complete access to sources of information, including e-mail communications among major participants.’
      • ‘If you fail to respond to this letter and the pending communications from my legal representatives, you have one other option.’
      • ‘They received several communications from the alleged person.’
      • ‘The intensive sessions are focused around special themes, including official letters, administrative reports, and professional communications.’
      • ‘Make certain a communication is genuine and information accurate before using it in a story.’
      • ‘Voters receive frequent campaign communications during the closing days of the campaign.’
      • ‘At an earlier hearing he pleaded guilty to sending an electronic communication with intent to cause distress.’
      message, statement, announcement, report, dispatch, communiqué, letter, bulletin, correspondence, news, word, information, intelligence, instruction
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    2. 1.2The successful conveying or sharing of ideas and feelings.
      ‘there was a lack of communication between Pamela and her parents’
      • ‘Their communication by letters had been strong until he had gotten out of prison last year.’
      • ‘Deb says family meeting is a vital component of successful communication, but I don't know what that means.’
      • ‘Indeed good communication skills can help successful endeavors while poor communication can stifle and hamper progress.’
      • ‘There were also a number of communications by letter and fax, and telephone discussions.’
      • ‘A decade on, they're still active feminists concerned with challenging hierarchies, disseminating ideas and opening the channels of communication between women.’
      • ‘I will not share any private communication I've had with my friend Katie.’
      • ‘I believe that I have said on this medium that communication between human beings is one of the world's biggest problems.’
      • ‘You are gifted on all levels of communication and express brilliant ideas and plans to achieve professional success today.’
      • ‘The officer must have experience that demonstrates possession of the skills necessary for successful communication across cultural boundaries.’
      • ‘The letter itself is a good communication about the purpose and the goals of ACT, and why people should rejoin.’
    3. 1.3Social contact.
      ‘she gave him some hope of her return, or at least of their future communication’
      • ‘Meaning and knowledge are seen as being created through social communication with others.’
      • ‘We can't live in a world void of contact or communication.’
      • ‘Broadcasting, after all, is an essential vehicle for social communication.’
      • ‘Social bonding and communication also occurs through touch.’
      • ‘Children in welfare homes living in a group usually find it hard to form such an attachment so they will possibly have emotional barriers in social communication and self-control.’
      • ‘To be fair, had I been in possession of my PowerBook I might have propped it up on the bar and avoided all communication and eye contact with the bartender.’
      • ‘I also created it to improve contact and communication within this group of female artists.’
      • ‘The interests of the two countries have been intertwined, based on frequent communication and contacts among their people.’
      • ‘Man does not stand in awe of man, nor is his genius admonished to stay at home, to put itself in communication with the internal ocean, but it goes abroad to beg a cup of water of the urns of other men.’
      contact, dealings, relations, connection, association, communion, socializing, intercourse, social intercourse, social relations, interface, interchange, correspondence, dialogue, talk, conversation, discussion, speaking, talking, chatting, meeting, getting in touch
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  • 2Means of sending or receiving information, such as telephone lines or computers.

    ‘satellite communications’
    [as modifier] ‘a communications network’
    • ‘All communications went down and roads were blocked.’
    • ‘Also they ‘promote computer communications as a medium for strengthening and building organised labour’.’
    • ‘He controls a worldwide satellite network, as well as radio and phone communications.’
    • ‘All communications including phone lines to and from Punjab are cut.’
    • ‘Roads became impassable, communications were cut off and life in rural districts came to a standstill.’
    • ‘The fallen tree pulled down electricity and telephone lines, plunging the entire area into darkness and cutting off land line communications.’
    • ‘They lost control of the south, their supply and communications lines were cut, and they even lost control of most of the capital for a while.’
    • ‘Technical security mechanisms to guard data transmitted over a communications network so that it cannot easily be intercepted or accessed.’
    • ‘However, as soon as computer to computer communications became important, the rigidity and expense of circuit switched voice networks became apparent.’
    • ‘Whether they could do so through Sweden depended on the state of the railways, roads, and telegraph communications.’
    • ‘Sparks received radio communications from the supply ship that they would be at least sixteen hours late due to high seas.’
    • ‘Businesses increasingly rely upon mission-critical information, financial and other data services being delivered through their computer and communications networks.’
    • ‘Also, some satellites send and receive telephone, fax, and computer communications.’
    • ‘They are expected to be used when satellite communications go down, computer links are broken or the enemy is thought to be intercepting radio conversations.’
    • ‘All conferences use exclusively closed communications lines.’
    • ‘Shaw has been working on building computer communications for the oil industry.’
    • ‘I had to get hold of the other satellite communications radio, which is on the right side of the vehicle closest to the enemy fire.’
    • ‘This extensive effort to keep communications lines open is one thing that is a major difference from the storms that happened earlier this year.’
    • ‘In an emergency, reliance on digital communications or even telephone lines is unacceptable.’
    • ‘According to him, all communications and emergency phone lines have been inspected and prepared for a large number of calls.’
    1. 2.1[treated as singular]The field of study concerned with the transmission of information by various means.
      • ‘We give them a practical grounding in subjects like computers, maths and communications as well as workshops related to the transition to third level.’
      • ‘She stated that her future goals are to attend graduate school, and study in the field of communications.’
      • ‘She has taken courses in maths, English, computers, gardening and communications, which involved 30 hours of studying.’
      • ‘After studying communications and political science, he was soon ready for more wanderings.’
      • ‘She will study communications at university this fall.’
      • ‘In 1999, she left there and began studying communications at Montreal's John Abbott College.’
      • ‘Miss Mayo stated that her future goals are for attending graduate school in the field of communications.’
      • ‘He pursued his doctoral studies in development and communications at the University of the Philippines at Los Banos.’
      • ‘He currently serves on the board of directors for the Canadian Institute for Telecommunications, a network of centres for research in the field of communications.’
      • ‘She graduates with a joint major in communications and Latin American studies.’
      • ‘Most of the articles are drawn from the field of communications, and while the work includes a range of theoretical approaches, most of the authors draw from their work.’
      • ‘These include fields such as marketing, finance, management, information systems, communications and environmental studies’
      • ‘Having been rejected by Glasgow School of Art, the then teenager briefly studied communications in Falkirk.’
      • ‘I thought that studying communications would lead me to a career in journalism.’
      • ‘In his opening remarks, Kolev said it was of paramount importance for Bulgaria to have an infusion of the latest technology in the fields of IT and communications as quickly as possible.’
      • ‘In the course, we learned communications and computer skills, as well as business skills needed to run a successful eco-tourism business.’
      • ‘After the course, Lewis is going to the University of Gloucester to do media communications and film studies.’
  • 3The means of traveling or of transporting goods, such as roads or railroads.

    ‘a city providing excellent road and rail communications’
    • ‘Rail, road and river communications came to a halt during the strike and businesses, schools were closed.’
    • ‘In times of dearth, body snatchers would try other sources: country churchyards further afield would be raided if they were on good communications routes - road, canal, or sea.’
    • ‘By the first week in June, French rail and road communications had been seriously degraded.’
    • ‘Beijing is planning to invest billions of yuan in three major railway projects to boost communications and trade along the coast and strengthen economic links with its neighbours.’
    • ‘Because of the isolation of Almeria, with its lack of road and railway communications, economic and demographic growth was based on the natural resources of the province.’
    • ‘Amongst these was overmanning, poor marketing knowledge, poor communications by road and rail and lack of modern manufacturing methods.’
    • ‘Southampton also has almost unrivalled transport communications providing a hub for road, rail and air travel together with the cruise port which welcomes visitors from around the world.’
    • ‘And York, he said, was also the natural choice of venue for the north not just because of its high tech credentials, but also because it was nationally central, with good road communications.’
    • ‘This is related to the improvement of road communications with its nearest and most important rival, and the as yet unimproved condition of the main roads.’
    • ‘They has won a five-year government contract to fly to the Christmas and Cocos Islands maintaining vital communications and transport links with the two territories.’
    • ‘The former German capital had been left deep in the heart of the Soviet zone of occupation, and in June 1948 Stalin sought to resolve its status by severing road and rail communications.’
    • ‘In the rest of Alberta, highways and private transportation using automobiles and trucks began to challenge the older communications network based on railways.’
    • ‘Furthermore a new transportation ministry replaced the previous communications and railway ministries.’
    • ‘There is no road communications and the only way to stay with the race is by push aeroplane or a snow machine.’
    • ‘Air attacks wreaked havoc on German road and rail communications, though in such a way that the invasion sector was not especially favoured.’
    links, connections, services, routes
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  • lines of communication

    • 1The connections between an army in the field and its bases.

      • ‘The experience of past wars and local conflicts shows that the state of lines of communication and transportation assets largely determines success in war.’
      • ‘When enemy lines of communication are disrupted, naval forces may pursue a tactical operation against separate convoys sailing along the coast.’
      • ‘Well-placed enemy units were exploiting the long lines of communication, delaying resupply efforts of much needed ammunition to the frontline troops.’
      • ‘The U.S. force operated with minimal reliance on ground lines of communication for sustainment.’
      • ‘Commanders pooled together forces from different services and different combat arms and learned how to control them in the face of extended lines of communication.’
      • ‘Overall, it made more than 6,000 sorties, of which almost 3,000 were directed at disrupting the enemy sea lines of communication.’
      • ‘Another frustrating aspect of Germany's security efforts was the susceptibility of German lines of communication to partisan attack.’
      • ‘The complex organization, which equipped and supplied the army, and maintaining lines of communication, was the real basis of its success.’
      • ‘The garrison troops manning the regional bases of operation will facilitate local stability, maintain the lines of communication, and provide logistical support.’
      • ‘The Resistance forces moved quickly and in a well-organized manner to carry out the orders on guarding roads and protecting lines of communication.’
      1. 1.1Any system for communicating information or ideas.
        ‘bureaucracies are characterized by established lines of communication’
        • ‘Building new lines of communication over evaluation results, registration information, and expectations of firms has all required patience from the firms.’
        • ‘This will benefit the centers since it will inject new lines of communication and bring new ways of thinking into the system.’
        • ‘The criminal then controls the lines of communication between the bank and its customer, and can ask for millions of pounds to be transferred to their own account.’
        • ‘The lines of communication between me and my players are wide open and the intention is to improve the whole team by each one of us giving our best.’
        • ‘‘What is clear is the need for dialogue and lines of communication to remain open,’ he said.’
        • ‘To establish clear lines of communication between senior leaders to reduce chances of miscommunication and miscalculation.’
        • ‘The Society uses a mentoring aspect to open lines of communication between leaders to share knowledge with subordinates.’
        • ‘One of the biggest challenges that faced the area was the need to open lines of communication among communities that are geographically separate and also different in racial and cultural backgrounds.’
        • ‘This will include clear lines of communication through Tourist Information Centres and the Yorkshire Tourist Board so that people are aware of the area's attractions.’
        • ‘Companies with good communication records are those which have open lines of communication between the car park attendant and the chairman of the board.’


Late Middle English: from Old French comunicacion, from Latin communicatio(n-), from the verb communicare to share (see communicate).