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I'd like to ask if there is any difference between

In such environment, we...

and

In such an environment, we...

If yes, then what does each phrase mean?

If anyone happens to know the grammatical term/topic to describe this difference so that I can read more about it, please let me know.

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I'm curious what you are trying to express here. I have never read/heard "in such environment" and I read a fair amount. Unless there's some technical application, I would use "in such an environment".

After searching on Google, "in such environment" comes up 144,000 times—with many results being similar.

"In such an environment" comes up over 5 million times and seems to be the most popular way of expressing this concept.

The only time I can imagine using "such environment" is when preceded by "no", otherwise, it just sounds wrong to me.

I may be wrong but "in such environment" sounds grammatically incorrect to me.

If you could explain what you're trying to say, it might be easier to help. :) Good luck!

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  • Thanks Aethon for your answer! I'm trying to describe, in my job application, a past internship that I had. I'm trying to describe the working environment at the place where I worked: in such an encouraging environment, we were able to cooperate and work on many projects together. – Dxml Apr 24 '16 at 1:34
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    If you are talking about environments, plural, you can say in such environments. – nnnnnn May 24 '16 at 11:48
  • You are correct.. if that was what was intended. :) – Aethon Jul 22 '16 at 22:00
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We use "such a/an" when refering to something equal or of the same kind of what was said before. And we use only "such" when we are referring particularly to that thing in question. With examples will be easier to understand the difference. Observe the two instances:

Using only "such" + {noun in question} "The place was filled with gold. To enter such place one had to leave his pocktes and bags outside." Here, the author refers to that place, exclusively, and not any place alike.

Using "such a/an" + {noun in question} "The place was filled with gold and guards. To enter such a place, one had to leave his clothes outside." Here, the author refers to 'any' place like that. "To enter such a place..." that means, that and any place of that kind, "one had to...".

That's the difference between "such" and "such a/an".

In the Asker's example, "in such an encouraging environment, we were able to cooperate and work on many projects together" means that they were able to cooperate in that specific environment and in any environment alike.

However, we don't know what's the text before the sample he provided. Perhaps only "such" could fit, too -- if it were referring exclusively to that specific environment.

The difference is more in the feeling of what exactly one wants to convey.

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