Creativity depends on where you are from

Montreal, Jan 28 (IANS) When it comes to the creative juices, some people have a faster flow than others as creativity is closely tied to culture, new research at the Concordia University has found.

The study compared nearly 300 individuals from Taiwan, a collectivist society, and Canada, a more individualistic country.
Results show that those from individualist societies generate a greater number of ideas as compared to their collectivist counterparts – though the cultures were on nearly equal footing when it came to the quality of that creative output.
“We found that the individualists came up with many more ideas. They also uttered more negative statements – and those statements were more strongly negative. They also displayed greater overconfidence,”said Gad Saad, professor at Concordia’s John Molson School of Business.
For the study, the team recruited students from two universities in Taipei and Montreal.
When it came to the quality of ideas produced, the collectivists scored marginally higher than the individualists.
“This is in line with another important cultural trait that some collectivist societies are known to possess – namely being more reflective as compared to action-oriented, having the reflex to think hard prior to committing to a course of action,” Saad explained.
Studies like this one are instrumental in understanding cultural differences that increasingly arise as the globe’s economic centre of gravity shifts towards East Asia, the authors concluded.
The paper was published in the Journal of Business Research.