The Geography of Creativity

The Geography of Creativity

Gunnar Törnqvist

What is creativity and who exactly is creative? In this insightful and highly readable book, Gunnar Törnqvist attempts to answer these questions by arguing that geographical millieux are hotbeds for creativity and renewal – places where pioneers in art, technology and science have gathered and developed their special abilities.

Chapter 8: Universities in Focus

Gunnar Törnqvist

Subjects: economics and finance, regional economics, geography, economic geography, urban and regional studies, regional economics

Extract

Chapter 3 discussed various types of scientific personalities. The pioneer or trailblazer and the academic entrepreneur or organizer represented two poles on a continuous scale. Anyone who has long moved in academic circles knows how rare genuinely creative researchers are and how the system tends to favour entrepreneurs. But the system also features a third kind of researcher, who might be referred to as the keeper. They have a broad overview of a discipline and are able to summarize disparate research findings, manage the entire body of knowledge and serve as a valuable source of information, particularly for instructional purposes. One person may possess the characteristics of all three types of researcher. But ordinarily a number of people collaborate to form an organization that has the intellectual and creative capital required for success. Such capital takes a long time to build up and may quickly dissipate. Most scientific milieux contain a combination of a few pioneers and a greater number of entrepreneurs and keepers. The discussion of Figure 6.2 in Chapter 6, with respect to stable and unstable phases of development, is highly relevant to an in-depth analysis of various research settings. Breeding grounds of 93 M2809 - TORNQVIST 9781781001509 PRINT.indd 93 16/11/2011 14:10 94 The geography of creativity scientific innovation come and go. Although the renown of radical trailblazing processes is passed down through literature and oral tradition, they often last for only a short period and are associated with a few particular people. However,...

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