What is creativity? Defining the skill of the future

Creativity can actually occur anywhere, but is found to be of particular importance in science and the arts. The right of business to exist lies in solving problems in new, applicable ways. The need for the makeability of creativity is based on this. It has led to many studies of creativity at different levels and from various research disciplines. And especially to the creativity of scientists, artists and children. The distinctiveness in the uniqueness and characterization of creativity and a creative person makes it an interesting and beloved subject. And in addition, the potential hidden in creativity for the development of ourselves, society and the economy. More insight into creativity and the process provides tools for government policy to focus on promoting creativity.

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What is creativity and who determines it?

In the Dutch dictionary, creativity is described as “creative power” or “the urge to shape. It can be explained as the ability and the will to create. A creative process can therefore be seen as a process in which people focus on forming new shapes and ideas. According to Runco and Jaeger, creativity requires originality and effectiveness. An original idea or product, which is not suitable or suitable for a practical application, is not creativity. Effectiveness is a form of value for creativity. Guilford (1950) described creative work as accepted or realistic ideas, which are critically assessed. Too much criticism and limited thinking can destroy creativity and ideas. However, the selection of ideas must be tested. The question that is asked here is who determines whether an idea is good? Stein (1953) explains a creative work as an innovative, not existing in this form, which is seen as tenable and usable for a certain group at a certain moment. He adds the factors of time and user to his definition of creativity and a creative work.

Characteristics of a creative person

Stein established a relationship between the perception of the individual and the degree of impact of the creative work. A creative person has a lower threshold or greater sensitivity to problems and gaps in society. Traits and skills attributed to creative individuals are broad interests; ability to assess objectively; autonomy; and open to new experiences. Research by Albert Rothenberg (1971) shows that a creative person has the ability to see similarities and a less creative person is focused on differences. Csikzentmihalyi researched a hundred creative persons. He added to the list of characteristics the ability to bring opposites together, and the ability to consciously experience the consciousness of a so-called “flow”. Flow is defined as a state of mind, especially experienced by highly creative artists, of optimal intrinsic motivation, where a person is fully committed to what he is doing. Any other needs or incentives are completely ignored during the flow. In addition to playfulness and high energy, a counterpart such as stamina is characteristic of the creative person. Feist has researched the relationship between someone’s character and creativity. He has compared groups of a group of artists and non-artists and a group of scientists and non-scientists. Scientists and artists do not share the same profile. Artists are more emotionally unstable, cooler and dislike group norms.

What makes one more creative than another?

In the 1960s, the Institute for Personality Assessment and Research Berkeley conducted psychological research into differences in the degree of creativity among creators in the same art discipline as architects. The research shows that the most creative artists had a strong ego and a high degree of independence. They have great willpower, confidence, dominance, and are self-centered. A marginal comment concerns the question whether these qualities lead to success in the creation of art, or whether these qualities are necessary to be successful as an artist in a Western society. Research by Otto Rank (1954) also shows the differences in the degree of creativity between persons on willpower and guilt as a result of conflicts with parents during childhood. Creativity arises from not automatically accepting the standards of your parents or society, but creating your own ideals and independence. This research also shows a link between independence and creativity.

According to Amabile (1996), 3 elements are necessary to increase creativity: expertise; skills for creative thinking; and intrinsic motivation. However, according to Amabile, a significant positive relationship between creativity and intrinsic motivation has not yet been consistently demonstrated. However, between creativity and intrinsic motivation in relation to a product.

Creativity & Intelligence

Research shows a positive but small correlation between intelligence and creativity (Gough, 1961, MacKinnon, 1961, Torrance, 1962, Guilford, 1967). A person with a low IQ is rarely very creative. Creative individuals have a degree of higher intelligence, but above an IQ of around 120, the link between intelligence and creativity disappears.

Creativity as an individual quality

According to Feist, creativity would also take place in isolation and loneliness and not during social processes. Social interaction can be an impulse. Creative people also have a greater need to direct their focus and attention within themselves and to distinguish themselves from others. Separation also contributes to confidence and belief in yourself and what you stand for. He concludes, like Csikzentmihalyi, that creative people are generally more performance-oriented, ambitious and internally motivated. Many people do have an idea, but it takes perseverance and commitment to actually develop and implement the idea.

Opinions seem to be divided as to whether creativity should be seen as mainly individual quality and solitary. Florida (2002), Oostwoud Wijdenes (2012), Griffin (2011), Robinson (2009) are of the opinion that creativity takes place in collective and diversity and that interaction with the environment is necessary. A side note that I must make here is that they already put creativity at the service of innovation processes, especially in this approach. Creativity is approached from the context in which it takes place and potentially assumes that everyone can develop creativity equally.


I wrote this blog as a result of my thesis research into the current Top Sector policy for the creative industry. The question in this study is whether, given the characteristics of the creativity of the cultural sector, it is justified that the interpretation of creativity development and economic growth is (only) focused on the instrumental values ​​and on certain sectors of the overall creative industry. herein the different concepts such as creativity and innovation.

21st century skills, Competencies, Creativity
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