Edited by Kerry Thomas and Janet Chan
Chapter 29: Creative encounters and collaborative agency in science, technology and innovation
The breakthrough of innovation policy in the 1990s made creativity relevant in a new way. Traditionally the problem of creativity used to be one of understanding the ‘geniuses’, exceptional individuals or cultural heroes who were able to contribute to science and art. This elitist concept of creativity reflected the society of the time in which only small groups of people were involved in creative activities. The Industrial and Technological Revolutions introduced us to inventors such as Watt and Edison who were also characterized in public as cultural heroes capable of changing the world. It was not until the 1950s that the idea of creativity was recognized as a resource for economic and political development that should be systematically developed. In 1950, J.P. Guilford (1950) set two tasks for creativity studies in his presidential address to the American Psychological Association. The first task was to recognize creative talents, to be achieved by developing tests that measured the creative traits of individuals. The second task was to develop technologies of creative thinking and decision-making.
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