Factors influencing creativity

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					  Factors influencing
    creativity and
innovation--- creativity

Definitions (Amabile et al 1996)
• Creativity is defined as
   • Production of novel and useful ideas in any domain
• Innovation is defined as
   • Successful implementation of creative ideas in any organisation
   • Creativity of individuals and teams is the starting point for
• Creativity and innovation are important
   • Life is becoming increasingly complex, fast and changing at a
     faster pace
   • Allows adaptation, maintain flexibility and is part of decision
   • Creativity requires originality and flexibility
   • Contributes to physical and psychological health and optimal
   Factors influencing creativity
       • Factors
          • Individual level
          • Group and organisational level

Category of        Factors (Based on Amabile et al
factors            1996)
                   Organisational motivation to innovate is the basic
Motivation         orientation towards innovation and supports for creativity
                   and innovation
                   Everything that an organisation has to aid work in
Resources          domain targeted for innovation including training
                   Refers to allowance of freedom in conduct of work,
Management         provision of challenging and interesting work,
practices          specification of clear strategic goals, formation of work
                   teams with diverse skills and perspectives, focus on
                   technology and reward and incentive structures
                   Norms, group cohesiveness, size , diversity, roles, task
Group              characteristics, and problem solving approaches used
        Factors affecting creativity
Category         Factors (Amabile et al 1996)
Organisational   Encouraging of risk taking and idea generation at all levels
encouragement    Fair supportive evaluation of new ideas, Reward and
                 recognition of creativity, collaborative idea flow and
                 participatory decision making
Supervisory      Goal clarity and clarity of problem definition, open
encouragement    interactions, support for team work and ideas,
Work group       Diversity of team members background, mutual openness to
encouragement    ideas, constructive challenging of ideas, shared commitment
Autonomy         Autonomy in day to day conduct of work, sense of ownership
                 and control over work and ideas
Resources        Adequacy of allocation indicating importance, time
Pressures        Excessive work load pressure, challenge due to intrinsic nature

Organisational   Internal strife, conservatism, rigid and formal management
impediments      structures
       Factors at individual level
• Age –
   •    creativity decreases with age unless individual is intentionally
• Intelligence-
   • certain level required for certain measures of creativity only.
• Personality-
   • high valuation of aesthetic qualities in experiences, interests,
     attraction to complexity, independence of judgment, autonomy,
     intuition , self confidence, ability to resolve conflicting traits in self
     and belief that self is creative
• Dispositions-
   • high level of intrinsic motivation, follow intrinsic interests, free
     from evaluations and constraints
• Capabilities
   • Insight is a result of integration of previously learned behaviors
• potential
    Processes influencing creativity
• Associative process is involved in divergent thinking and
  problem solving
• Cognitive flexibility-process by which obvious patterns of
  thinking are discarded and new higher order rules are
• Intrinsic motivation –process where people feel motivated
  by interest, challenge and satisfaction of work itself
• Creative thinking is capacity to put existing ideas in new
  combinations and is facilitated by diversity of experience
  and learning
• Divergent thinking –process by which one extrapolates
  many possible answers to an initial stimulus or target data
• Intuition of flash intelligence- flash of a recognition that
  problem is solved
• Flow- when person is fully immersed in what is being done
  and has a feeling of energized focus, shows full
  involvement and success and excludes other stimuli
      Pressures or impediments
• Two types-alpha and beta
   • Alpha is objective
   • Beta is based on individuals interpretations
• Positive pressures
   • freedom, autonomy, good role models and resources
     (including time), encouragement specifically for
     originality, freedom from criticism, and “norms in
     which innovation is prized and failure not fatal”
• Inhibiting pressures
   • lack of respect (specifically for originality), red tape,
     constraint, lack of autonomy and resources,
     inappropriate norms, project management, feedback,
     time pressure, competition, and unrealistic expectations
Resources influencing creativity

 • Time
   • Original ideas are remote with respect to
     original problem
   • Creative ideas require time for incubation
        Demographic factors

• Birth order
    • Middle born children are more creative
•   family size
•   Number of siblings
•   Interval among siblings
•   Family and school atmosphere
    • Large families have authoritarian structures
    • Freedom and autonomy facilitates creativity
          Neurological factors
• Creativity reflects originality and appropriateness,
  intuition and logic. It requires both hemispheres
• Requires consistent communication among many
  areas in brain and increased emotional expression
• Defocused attention
• Knowledge –declarative, factual, tactics or
  procedural knowledge
• Intuition, ability to consider two different
  perspectives simultaneously, incubation,
Cognitive neuroscience of creativity
• Creative thinking is the result of ordinary mental
• Human information processing is hierarchically
  structured and creative mentation lies at the
  highest—prefrontal cortex
• Two different types of neural systems
   • Emotional brain-attaches a value tag to incoming
     information and enables evaluation of its biological
     significance—does “Me-relevant computation”
   • Perceptual brain- performs detailed feature analysis of
     incoming information enabling construction of
     sophisticated representations that form basis for
     cognitive processing
   • Both the systems can be dissociated anatomically and
Cognitive neuroscience of creativity
• Executive function—consisting of integrating of
  processed information, formulation of plans and
  strategies for appropriate behavior and instruction
  of adjacent motor cortices for execution-requires
  both systems
   • Emotional Process of evaluating the significance of
     complex social situations—Me-relevant emotions
   • Cognitive process of Selective attention and Feature
     analysis leading to mental models
   • Each have separate memories which track their
   • Full reintegration of these systems occurs in the pre-
     frontal cortex
   • At all levels of functional hierarchy neural structures
     have direct access to activation of the motor system
Cognitive neuroscience of creativity
  • Pre-frontal cortex performs executive functions and
    thus is central to creative thinking
  • Enables higher cognitive functions such as self
    construct, self reflective consciousness, abstract
    thinking, complex social functions, cognitive flexibility,
    planning, and willed action
  • Other cognitive functions are working memory,
    temporal integration and sustained and directed
  • Two main parts
     • Ventero-medial –connected to higher order emotional
       processing system—does social function through “me-
       relevant” assessment
     • Dorso-medial- connected to higher order information and
       cognitive processing systems—does working memory,
       cognitive flexibility, temporal integration, ordering and
       sequencing and directed attention
          Process of creativity
• Every neural circuit can compute specific
  information and also produce novel combinations
• More integrative the neural structure more
  combinational novelty can occur
• Appropriateness is a function of higher order
  structures that assess a complex and changing set
  of rules or values implicit in persons culture. This
  generates a selection process which selects the
  appropriate idea out of many
• Four types of creativity based on types of
  structures and processing modes
                   Types of creativity
             Attention is related to        Attention is related to search
             retrieval of affective         for task related information.
             memory. Insights depend        Quality of insights depends
Deliberate   upon specific emotion and      upon expertise and how
             conform to persons values      flexible cognitively the pre-
             and norms. It is independent   frontal cortex is—domain
             of domain knowledge            independent trait. Creativity is
                                            domain specific.
            Occur when neural activity      Insight has origin in associative
            of emotional structures is      unconscious thinking when
            spontaneously represented       thresholds are lowered
            in working memory after an      (Incubation) . Do not conform
Spontaneous intense emotional activity/     to convention. Become
            experience. Are not domain      conscious when represented in
            specific. Require specific      working memory. Depend upon
            skills. Called revelation       expertise
 Impediments to business creativity
        (Amabile 1998)
• Business creativity-requires both originality and
• Six set of factors impede business creativity
• Challenge—match work to persons capabilities
• Freedom- autonomy to choose process not ends
• Resources-appropriate time and money
• Work group features—mutually supportive with diversity
  of perspectives and backgrounds
• Supervisory support—in form of extrinsic rewards, praise,
  foster collaboration, communication
• Organisational support- leaders who put in place systems
  and processes which support creativity-support failures




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