Try Our Apps


Supposedly vs. Supposably


[koun-ter-pruh-duhk-tiv] /ˌkaʊn tər prəˈdʌk tɪv/
thwarting the achievement of an intended goal; tending to defeat one's purpose:
Living on credit while trying to save money is counterproductive.
Origin of counterproductive
1960-65; counter- + productive
Related forms
counterproductively, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for counterproductive
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Idealizing all these possibilities would be as counterproductive as demonizing literacy-based practical experiences.

  • The leadership in Bulgaria, as did those in other Eastern European countries, learned that repression was counterproductive.

    Area Handbook for Bulgaria Eugene K. Keefe, Violeta D. Baluyut, William Giloane, Anne K. Long, James M. Moore, and Neda A. Walpole
British Dictionary definitions for counterproductive


tending to hinder or act against the achievement of an aim
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for counterproductive

also counter-productive, counter productive, 1920, American English, from counter- + productive.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for counterproductive

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for counterproductive

Scrabble Words With Friends