Definition of working in US English:

working

adjective

  • 1Having paid employment.

    ‘the size of the working population’
    • ‘A third of the working population in the Western Isles were employed by the local authority.’
    • ‘That includes trying to increase the working population in Scotland.’
    • ‘Her stories are told without censure, and with sympathy for both children and parents, especially working mothers.’
    • ‘It is nearer one tenth of the population or one fifth of the working population.’
    • ‘Despite this, many working mothers encounter few problems and have supportive employers.’
    • ‘So why do we not demand more of these productivity gains back in practical support for working mothers and fathers?’
    • ‘Only another working mother can fully realize what my life has become.’
    • ‘The failure of schools to offer working mothers more flexibility, she believes, remains the major stumbling block.’
    • ‘The 1980s and 1990s were decades of progress for western career women and working mothers.’
    • ‘When are we going to get something done about this pampered section of the working population?’
    • ‘Scotland is facing a serious future skills gap with an ageing and shrinking working population, according to a new study.’
    • ‘Where is this compassionate Government that cares for the working person and the employee?’
    • ‘Moreover these old industries now employ only a tiny fraction of the working population.’
    • ‘They thus contributed to the further political disorientation of the working population.’
    • ‘Most of the working women are employed as seamstresses in the dressmaking industry.’
    • ‘This affects, directly or indirectly, more than half the working population of this country.’
    • ‘It is not uncommon for nursing working mothers to make a lunchtime dash for a car, plug into the cigarette lighter and pump away in the parking lot.’
    • ‘Personal pensions were set up because the working population has become more mobile.’
    • ‘A large section of the working population already have ID as a condition of their employment.’
    • ‘Over half the women who are employed in most urban areas are working mothers.’
    employed, in work, in a job, waged, in gainful employment
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Engaged in manual labor.
      ‘the vote is no longer sufficient protection for the working man’
      • ‘Is cycling still a working man's sport?’
      • ‘"I guess you'd say I'm kind of a working man's lawyer."’
    2. 1.2 Relating to, suitable for, or for the purpose of work.
      ‘improvements in living and working conditions’
      • ‘Mick woke up, got washed and shaved and put his working clothes on thinking it was 7.30 am Monday morning.’
      • ‘To reserve a place on the small business wirefree working seminar call 0208 232 7229.’
      • ‘It has produced unfriendly working conditions for people with families.’
      • ‘These passes provide pensioners, many of whom have worked hard all their working lives and paid taxes, with free travel.’
      • ‘Another 200,000 died from hunger, disease, and inhumane working conditions.’
      • ‘In May, workers walked off the job to protest unsafe working conditions.’
      • ‘Although unemployment is still rising, this is only because job creation is not keeping pace with the population of working age.’
      • ‘Employees are often forced to work a seven-day week and complain of low wages and poor working conditions.’
      • ‘The Smiths have cook-ins during the weekends to make meals for the working week using fresh produce.’
      • ‘Full employment through shorter working hours at worker co-ops was the ideal.’
      • ‘Now if you want to be totally stupid about it that could work out at almost a year in the working life of an employee.’
      • ‘Other outstanding issues include working conditions and workplace safety.’
      • ‘Notwithstanding the difficult working conditions, a major inroad was made.’
      • ‘Does an employee have a duty not to bad-mouth their employer out of working hours?’
      • ‘Flexible working rules allow an employee to look after a child up to the age of six.’
      • ‘Therefore we shall be in a position to offer attractive wages and suitable working conditions.’
      • ‘The Victorian Building Workers campaign for a shorter working week was also discussed at length.’
      • ‘He was a well-known advocate for better working conditions and higher pay for Cambodian workers.’
      • ‘If hired as a runner, always, always get a signed contract with your working terms and conditions.’
      • ‘I'm also prepared to stand up and be counted though, if I feel strongly about issues that affect my working conditions.’
    3. 1.3 (of an animal) used in farming, hunting, or for guard duties; not kept as a pet or for show.
      • ‘They are bred for hunting and are designed to be working dogs.’
      • ‘The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association says it is cruel to keep the working dog locked up for eight hours each day.’
      • ‘As a working dog, this breed is always happiest when it is given a job to do.’
      • ‘There is a myth that the animals get fat and lazy and that working dogs no longer work but none of that is the case.’
      • ‘So therefore there is no reason they cant be pets rather than working dogs.’
      • ‘Some working dogs go to the armed forces or the police, as German Shepherds are one of the largest groups in the home.’
      • ‘He was also a renowned and skilful dog trainer and was never without a good working dog.’
      • ‘Many graziers in the Far West of New South Wales rely on working dogs to help round up goats.’
      • ‘Perhaps one-third of the land under crop was taken up by oats grown to feed a farm's own working horses.’
      • ‘In summary, it appears that stomach ulcers are a common finding in foals and working horses.’
      • ‘The dog, described as a white collie, is a working dog and has never been missing for this long without returning.’
      • ‘During the time that the baits were out, our three yard and working dogs were on the chain.’
      • ‘He said the dogs were treated as working dogs rather than as pets but were still loved by their handlers.’
      • ‘Ms Lloyd said cacti could injure livestock and working dogs and contaminate wool.’
      • ‘There is work around livestock that simply can't be done without a real working dog.’
      • ‘In future docking will only be allowed for working dogs whose tails could otherwise become painfully damaged.’
      • ‘It was also a chance for city dwellers to take a closer look at ferrets, birds of prey and working dogs.’
      • ‘Again looking back in history, the Celts were good farmers and set great store by their working dogs.’
      • ‘A horse could live on hay and grass alone, but eating time and bulk both had to be reduced for a working horse.’
      • ‘Hunt supporters from the region will be taking dozens of working dogs to protest against the ban outside Parliament.’
  • 2Functioning or able to function.

    ‘the mill still has a working waterwheel’
    • ‘So, it's difficult to create a working model to handle the relief logistics ahead of time.’
    • ‘Those were the days when a patent application had to be accompanied by a working model.’
    • ‘The objective of the project is to research and make a working model of a body system.’
    • ‘Therefore, the working model presented provides only a rough picture of what is really going on.’
    • ‘At first it was powered by the River Bollin and there is still a working water wheel for visitors to see and especially to hear.’
    • ‘Also, at the time, his mobile was one of the few working numbers that the Australian media were able to reach when the story broke.’
    • ‘What industry would benefit from a large database of known working email addresses?’
    • ‘Is it like geography, hundreds of years before we can build a working model?’
    • ‘Having said that, it will be interesting to see how a working model actually feels in use.’
    • ‘So all these things together, you're all of a sudden seeing a working business model.’
    • ‘Williams says that although in many cases scientists have worked out how it happens, he wants to build a working model of the process.’
    • ‘The highlight of this particular gallery will be the large working scale model of the Town Mill.’
    • ‘While the idea of creating actual working models was pretty cool, the actual execution was far from satisfying.’
    • ‘Back then, Boeing engineers used the wind tunnel model to create new and working designs.’
    • ‘Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service stresses the importance of having a working smoke alarm.’
    • ‘Additional data is now being collected to set up a working model for managing traffic flow.’
    • ‘Judges moving among the audience keenly observed the working models and rated the best projects.’
    • ‘Class Two involves the design and manufacture of a working car chassis as well as competing in numerous static events.’
    • ‘Tony already has a working model of the pendulum in his research room.’
    • ‘The students made use of charts and working models to explain their experiments.’
    functioning, operating, going, running, active
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 (of parts of a machine) moving and causing a machine to operate.
      ‘the working parts of a digital watch’
      • ‘The notion of using molecules as the working elements of a computer goes back several decades.’
      • ‘Such systems have multiple working parts, each of which is essential for function.’
      • ‘Listen, if you take a working part out of a machine you end up with junk!’
      in motion, operating, operational, going, on the move, active
      View synonyms
  • 3(of a theory, definition, or title) used as the basis for work or argument and likely to be developed, adapted, or improved later.

    ‘the working hypothesis is tested and refined through discussion’
    • ‘It has a working title and even that's more than I've managed to create in ages.’
    • ‘To endow it with some interest, we need to break it down into a set of working theories which we then apply to different domains of fact.’
    • ‘The maths game, which has the working title Pirate's Star, is being devised by software developers at Abertay.’
    • ‘The working definition of insomnia is a persistent difficulty in initiating and maintaining sleep.’
    • ‘I'm definitely going to have to take some time to formulate a working theory in my own mind.’
    • ‘No one knows for sure, but there is a working theory currently making the rounds.’
    • ‘On the basis of the results a working hypothesis has been developed which is summarized in Fig.7.’
    • ‘I wrote an original screenplay for a film which has the working title Personal Honour.’
    • ‘The working title for the conversion is the Skerryvore Project.’
    • ‘Then, each interviewee was asked how the working definition compares with his or her own.’
    • ‘Is there a working definition that people have agreed on in order to facilitate discussion?’
    • ‘But here, as with other mental states, we need a working definition to clarify what we are looking for.’
    • ‘In conducting the search, we had to develop a working definition of each term.’
    • ‘I'm going to use that as my working definition of gumption from now on.’
    • ‘This, of course, is all debatable as well, but it at least seems like a working hypothesis.’
    • ‘Now that we have a working definition of money, we can now move on to defining what the supply of it is in a given economy.’
    • ‘So we must accept a working definition at some point, and go with it, flaws and all.’
    • ‘Power and Stone - the working title of the book - will be published next May.’
    • ‘Can we establish a working theory to explain these exceptions, and what consequences might this have?’
    • ‘Take the case of accepting something as a working hypothesis or for the sake of argument.’
    temporary, provisional, interim, pro tem, short-term, makeshift, improvised, emergency, impromptu, rough and ready
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 (of something possessed) sufficient to work with.
      ‘they have a working knowledge of contract law’
      • ‘He still must gain a working knowledge of a sophisticated offense before he becomes a threat.’
      • ‘And as a way of indicating the process by which she acquired a working knowledge of the city around her, it rings untrue.’
      • ‘And of course a working knowledge of the properties of metals could easily lend itself to deception and fraud.’
      • ‘He has a working knowledge of French, but for some reason does not get on well with the French boys.’
      • ‘A working knowledge of basic mathematical concepts is essential in modern life.’
      • ‘After helping him on a few houses, I gained a working knowledge of the proper use of fittings.’
      • ‘All you need to bring with you is a working knowledge of the language in which you intend to write, a pad and a pencil.’
      • ‘But not all of you will require a working knowledge of English grammar to get by in life.’
      • ‘He had a working knowledge of five languages and was fluent in four.’
      • ‘Postgraduate study and a working knowledge of the latest industry advances are key.’
      • ‘It was sheer luck that, by the time he was an adult, he had a working knowledge of some of the finest food in the world.’
      • ‘Women in rural areas must be able to have a basic working knowledge of what is in the Domestic Violence Act.’
      • ‘Although anyone with a working knowledge of PCs can set up their own back up system relatively simply, not everyone knows how.’
      • ‘But a working knowledge of English is not necessary for daily life in Greenland.’
      • ‘Read on to gain a working knowledge of the tremendous range of mowers available today.’
      • ‘Computer skills are essential, as is a working knowledge of control systems.’
      • ‘They cover terms that provide the beginnings of a viable working vocabulary for describing meter.’
      sufficient, adequate, good enough, viable
      View synonyms

noun

  • 1The action of doing work.

    • ‘Claims of working for the fictitious water board allowed bogus callers to steal from the home of an elderly Chelmsford resident.’
    • ‘He combined working as a warehouse manager in Manchester with singing on the northern club circuit where he met Windsor Davies.’
    • ‘This was a direct result of working with them at the studio radio station.’
    • ‘It was great fun to work there and I loved working as a team.’
    • ‘I still find the whole working from home thing a bit of a task.’
    • ‘And Mr Blair said ID cards would help against illegal immigration and working.’
    • ‘I decided to leave school and concentrate on playing golf and working at night.’
    • ‘In class she could barely keep her mind on her work and working at the car shop seemed to go by as quickly as molasses.’
    • ‘Maybe something to do with social work or working for an aid organisation overseas.’
    • ‘I thought I might take the day off from work, but I think working will actually be good.’
    • ‘He told those attending she had ‘aura, charisma and a precious gift of working with children’.’
    • ‘BNP already has mainland joint ventures for managing money and working with corporations.’
    • ‘She loved working with the school, she saw the students as people.’
    • ‘I'm surprised this is not a more frequent event with the daily working of school buses.’
    • ‘Some believe that working two shifts will cut hourly machine costs in half.’
    • ‘We need to build our links with the community through coalition work and working with other unions.’
    • ‘She works in the garden there, particularly enjoying working with flowers.’
  • 2workingsThe way in which a machine, organization, or system operates.

    ‘we will be less secretive about the workings of government’
    • ‘Another potential use for the system is in providing information about the workings of buildings or machinery not visible to the naked eye.’
    • ‘Why should I have to understand the inner workings of this machine?’
    • ‘My favorite quote from the book concerns the early workings of American-style democratic politics.’
    • ‘The public has had the pleasure of an unprecedented and still unfolding expose on the inner workings of a public service operating in a culture of fear.’
    • ‘And being a politician helps me get good raw material about the inside workings of governments and organizations.’
    • ‘It is the heat given off by the workings of quite different machinery.’
    • ‘We need to be able to have confidence in the justice system and everyone needs to be able to have confidence in the workings of that justice system.’
    • ‘And they also had to study up on DNA science and the workings of the legal system.’
    • ‘However, with the increasingly detailed knowledge of the workings of the human machine, we began to slowly develop a pattern that might just explain why.’
    • ‘First, the synthetic systems can serve as a basis to understand the workings of natural systems, which are usually much more complicated and difficult to unravel.’
    • ‘They are alone with the rollercoaster of emotion even though they are still part of the workings of political machine.’
    • ‘The media has exposed deceit and fabrication behind the workings of the government machinery and the various commissions set up to look into acts of violence.’
    • ‘As a result, there is a general suspicion about the truth of statements emerging from the machine about the workings of government policy.’
    • ‘The internal workings of the machines cannot be examined by citizens, political opponents or technology experts.’
    • ‘Access to the transparent buildings reproduced a feeling of knowledge, knowledge of the inner workings of both machines and humans.’
    • ‘Hollywood suffers, as does parliamentary journalism, from a belief that people are far more interested in the inner workings and machinations of the business than they are.’
    • ‘For those who disagree with a judge's opinion, there is ample opportunity to respond within the normal workings of the judicial system.’
    • ‘The structure of the political system and the workings of that system favour those who have economic influence.’
    • ‘Ultimately, it precludes a collective understanding of the workings of an economic system which destroys people's lives.’
    • ‘He gained a lot more insight into the workings of our legal system from his experience than I did from mine.’
    functioning, operation, running, action, performance
    mechanism, machinery, moving parts, working parts, movement, action, works
    View synonyms
  • 3usually workingsA mine or a part of a mine from which minerals are being extracted.

    • ‘Caves, tunnels and mine workings may be used to provide cover for communications centers and stations.’
    • ‘The surrounding area is mostly old mine workings and is close to the River Calder.’
    • ‘The expected solution is a permanent diversion around the problem, which is a legacy of old mine workings.’
    • ‘With the dumps gone, datolite collecting switched to the accessible underground workings of the Michigan mine.’
    • ‘The campsite at La Torerera, near the town of Huelva in the southwest corner of Andalucia, is on the site of old mineral workings, now partly a nature reserve.’
    • ‘Beneath the site there were some disused mine shafts leading to old coal workings which, unknown to the defendants, were connected to the plaintiff's mine.’
    • ‘The ancient mine workings are mostly open-cut trenches of up to a few metres in depth.’
    • ‘Just when he moved into the capacious double-cave system, among the old slate quarry workings of Castle Crag, is not certain.’
    • ‘In some instances, subsurface information from drill holes, mine workings, and geophysical surveys provide supporting factual information.’
    • ‘He employed thirty to forty men in the mid-1930s and extracted ore from underground workings that were accessed by shafts and declines.’
    • ‘Explore the Lowther Hills or wander along lower-level paths, past the old lead mine workings.’
    • ‘On the other hand, wherever intelligence and tractability mattered, as in mine workings and coal pits, and in pulling harvesters and ploughs, horses were the favoured form of power.’
    • ‘Unbeknownst to them, the dam was constructed over five disused mine shafts, which led into the underground workings of an old mine.’
    • ‘The room and pillar mine workings are stable with no signs of salt movement or rock distress.’
    • ‘The building is surrounded on three sides by the pink-brown textured walls of old quarry workings, so that the archives are held in a granite embrace.’
    • ‘It can play a part in locating old mines by detecting voids and fractures and profiling old workings within the seam.’
    • ‘He was an engineer by profession, and used to look after the engines and trucks which ran on the light railways out to the more distant parts of the opencast mine workings.’
    • ‘But the same would be likely to apply to inert waste deposited at the County's exhausted minerals workings or landfill sites.’
    • ‘It was centered on the Black Iron mine workings.’
    • ‘This vein trends to the northeast, and it is likely that it intersects the Greenbank vein somewhere to the north of the current mine workings.’

Phrases

  • working lunch (or dinner, etc.)

    • A lunch (or dinner, etc.) at which those present discuss business.

Pronunciation

working

/ˈwərkɪŋ//ˈwərkiNG/