In this chapter, we analyze the relationship between creativity issues and design theory.
Although these two notions seemingly correspond to different academic fields (psychology, cognitive
science and management for creativity; engineering science and logic for design theory), they appear
to be deeply related when it comes to design methods and design management. Analyzing three
historical moments in design theory-building (the 1850s, with the ratio method for industrial
upgrading in Germany; the 20th century with systematic design and the 1920s with the Bauhaus
theory), we point to the dialectical interplay that links creativity issues and design theory,
structured around the notion of “fixation effect”: creativity identifies fixation effects, which
become the targets of new design theories; design theories invent models of thought to overcome
them; and, in turn, these design theories can also create new fixation effects that will then be
designated by creativity studies. This dialectical interplay leads to regular inventions of new ways
of managing design, that is, new ways of managing knowledge, processes and organizations for design
activities. We use this framework to analyze recent trends in creativity and design theories.
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.