Definition of shifting in English:

shifting

adjective

  • Changing, especially unpredictably.

    ‘diverse districts with shifting demographics’
    • ‘You're going to see shifting trends all the time.’
    • ‘This shifting focus in higher education illustrates the need to understand what motivates students to learn.’
    • ‘Like product success in a perpetually shifting marketplace, power accrues to those with their finger on the present pulse.’
    • ‘This is an amazing, and amazingly depressing, novella of the rise and fall of an alien society around a shifting religious myth.’
    • ‘In all communal life there is a shifting balance between public and private activities.’
    • ‘It has left Rees with what she describes as "shifting emotional darkness".’
    • ‘The wars were chaotic, an impenetrable series of vicious contests between shifting clan alliances.’
    • ‘An ox grazed a corner of the grounds; the repetitive dull tank of its copper bell rode the shifting wind.’
    • ‘More than ever, culture and identity create constantly shifting borders.’
    • ‘Here scenes, film images and chance encounters will merge, transform and dissolve before you like a constantly shifting hallucinatory dream.’
    • ‘People boarded and got off the boat at different cities, so we were always working with a shifting team.’
    • ‘Not to gloss over a comprehensive and really well-illustrated history, but I was most interested in his characterisation of the shifting relationship between humans and machines.’
    • ‘Shifting consumer demand is at the heart of this evolution.’
    • ‘The production sounds great and the music is very interesting, with shifting rhythms and moods.’
    • ‘Since their 1988 debut, the band has survived a decade and a half of shifting music scenes and neglect from the wider music world.’
    • ‘Girlfriend Emma and best mate Danny, meanwhile, chart the shifting balance of hopes and fears of friends and family.’
    • ‘As the fund manager, MDL engaged in such transactions as a means of capitalizing on shifting market conditions.’
    • ‘The immediate impact of the shifting policies will vary across the state.’
    • ‘From shifting populations to the "brain drain" to the farm crisis of the 1980s, we've faced some tough times.’
    • ‘This year, there was evidence of shifting priorities.’
    variable, inconstant, varying, changing, fluctuating, irregular, erratic, wavering, vacillating, inconsistent, fluid, floating, unsteady, unfixed, uneven, unstable, unsettled, turbulent, movable, mutable, chameleon-like
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Phrases

  • shifting sands

    • Used in reference to something that is constantly changing, especially unpredictably.

      ‘whether something is accepted depends upon the shifting sands of taste’
      • ‘At the parish level I have experienced firsthand the shifting sands of Anglicanism from covenant to contract.’
      • ‘At a time of great challenge in the world the commander in chief must stand on principle, not on the shifting sands of political convenience.’
      • ‘Clan alliances are built on shifting sands.’
      • ‘He built his long-term hopes for the prosperity of the church on the shifting sands of revival rather than the steady development of congregation-based programmes.’
      • ‘The religious history, while provocative, is built on shifting sands.’
      • ‘These questions found no purchase on the shifting sands of memory.’
      • ‘"That idea is built on the shifting sands of biology," says Sullivan.’
      • ‘Any minister required to speak for the government on its most enduring policy dilemma knows he is on shifting sands.’
      • ‘Aside from swings in the economy, the board has to contend with the shifting sands of global politics, a factor in re-shaping the company.’
      • ‘The fate of the City Hospital is nothing new to us across the Atlantic, where market economy dictates the shifting sands of the medical landscape.’

Pronunciation

shifting

/ˈSHiftiNG//ˈʃɪftɪŋ/