If something's inconclusive, that means it doesn't lead to a conclusion or a resolution. Inconclusive often describes scientific results. If your data about a flu outbreak is inconclusive, then your results don't prove anything.

A good way to remember the meaning of inconclusive is to look at the root word conclusive, which means "definitive, decisive, and convincing." When you add in- — which means "not" — to the front of conclusive, you get a word that means "not definitive." When something's inconclusive, it doesn't resolve your questions and leaves room for debate. If you're a detective, the last thing you want to hear is that your evidence is inconclusive.

Definitions of inconclusive

adj not conclusive; not putting an end to doubt or question

“an inconclusive reply”
inconclusive evidence”
“the inconclusive committee vote”
uncertain as a sign or indication
not leading to a definite ending or result
head-to-head, neck and neck, nip and tuck
inconclusive as to outcome; close or just even in a race or comparison or competition
not final or absolute
not definitely settling something
indeterminate, undetermined
not precisely determined or established; not fixed or known in advance
forming an end or termination; especially putting an end to doubt or question
definitive, determinate
supplying or being a final or conclusive settlement
determining or having the power to determine an outcome
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