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Is there a valid word for the act of enabling?

I want to say "enablement". It is listed in the dictionary, but is it in common use? I've never heard it before. Is there a more apt word?

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Enabling is what you do when you enable something, so enabling is the act. What do you mean by the act of enabling? –  Matt Эллен Sep 27 '11 at 14:37
    
@Matt I've changed the title now. I hope that clarifies my question. Having said that, your answer may actually be correct. –  Urbycoz Sep 28 '11 at 7:28
    
Your parsing of the dictionary entry is erroneous. Enablement is not specific to electronics. –  Matt Эллен Sep 28 '11 at 8:16
    
@Matt I see what you mean. I've changed the question to reflect this. Re-open please! –  Urbycoz Sep 28 '11 at 9:09
    
Now your question is reopened. –  Mehper C. Palavuzlar Sep 29 '11 at 8:18

4 Answers 4

up vote 1 down vote accepted

"Enablement" is the noun form of the verb enable. Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, 1913 Edition defines it as follows:

The act of enabling, or the state of being enabled; ability.

Other dictionaries defining this term are:

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I see. You're right. I've altered my question to reflect this. –  Urbycoz Sep 29 '11 at 7:55

‘Enablement’, in the sense of ‘the action or means of enabling’ is well attested in the OED from 1495 onwards.

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Do you have a reference for that? –  Urbycoz Sep 28 '11 at 7:25
    
@Urbycoz: "in the OED" is his reference, "OED" is the Oxford English Dictionary. (see here for more abbreviations) –  Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 Sep 28 '11 at 12:04
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That's not what I meant. It's not a reference that can be easily checked. Barrie, is there a link you can give to back up your claim? –  Urbycoz Sep 29 '11 at 8:36
    
@Urbycoz: Sorry, I’ve only just noticed that I hadn’t replied. The 1495 citation is from an Act of Parliament and reads: ‘This acte of enhablement and restitucion of Thomas Erle of Surrey.’ –  Barrie England Nov 11 '11 at 13:18

Empowering may be suitable in certain contexts.

He believed in empowering (enabling) his followers.

Here is the Google dictionary result (second one on the list may be of interest to you):

empowering is a form of: em·pow·er

verb /emˈpou(-ə)r/  empowered, past participle; empowered, past tense; empowering, present participle; empowers, 3rd person singular present

Give (someone) the authority or power to do something - nobody was empowered to sign checks on her behalf

Enable (someone) to do (something) - cryptography will empower individuals to control their information

Make (someone) stronger and more confident, esp. in controlling their life and claiming their rights - movements to empower the poor

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Also, in the negative sense, allowing someone like an alcoholic to continue their destructive behavior. see also –  JeffSahol Sep 27 '11 at 15:41

Facilitation, perhaps?

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Hello and welcome to EL&U, Ratz. Adding a dictionary link or a conjecture about why your suggestion is suitable (for a single-word-request) will usually suffice if you need more text to meet the minimum answer length, and it helps to make your answer more useful. –  aedia λ Sep 27 '11 at 15:49

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