Publication Details

Ziegler, A. & Vialle, W. (2009). The tower of creativity. In J. Shi (Eds.), International Conference on the Cultivation and Education of Creativity and Innovation (pp. 28-40). Xi'an, China: Institute of Psychology of Chinese Academy of Sciences.


In the field of creativity research, two paradigms can be distinguished. Both can be traced back to a seminal publication, the Art of Thought by Graham Wallas and Richard Smith in 1926, and to Joy Paul Guilford’s American Psychologist paper entitled Creativity in 1950. While Wallas and Smith conceptualized creativity as a thinking process, Guilford envisaged creativity as a personal trait. Nevertheless, a common element of both paradigms was that creativity is bound to an individual. Similarly, this is also the prevailing view in giftedness research: Creativity is a characteristic of an outstanding individual who is capable of either seeing clearly what is still indistinct for everybody else or of perceiving the outline of something that others cannot yet fathom. Individuals can use these abilities in many domains, such as the creative arts, science, interpersonal relations, leadership or sports. The individualistic paradigm of creativity has spurred many educational approaches, fostering such elements as fantasy, imagination, self-confidence, artistic skills and so on.

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