rationale

[rash-uh-nal]
noun
1.
the fundamental reason or reasons serving to account for something.
2.
a statement of reasons.
3.
a reasoned exposition of principles.

Origin:
1650–60; < Latin: neuter of ratiōnālis rational


1. logic, basis, grounds.
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World English Dictionary
rationale (ˌræʃəˈnɑːl)
 
n
a reasoned exposition, esp one defining the fundamental reasons for a course of action, belief, etc
 
[C17: from New Latin, from Latin ratiōnālis]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

rationale
1657, from L.L. rationale, noun use of neuter of L. rationalis "of reason" (see rational).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
The rationale for the law is the idea that restaurants lose business because
  taco trucks can undercut their prices.
Probably not, but it should be fun to read everyone's rationale for their
  choices.
Now a new rationale for planetary exploration has emerged-environmentalism.
Any alternative expression system needs to have a really good, product-focused
  rationale if it is going to succeed.
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