Do Virtual Environments Unleash Everyone’s Creative Potential?
The aim of this study was to explore (a) whether Multi-User Virtual Environments improve everyone’s creativity whatever their creative potential profile, (b) the combination of internal creative resources that favours fluency and originality in a brainstorming task in virtual and real environments (VE and RE respectively). For this purpose, our study involved brainstorming sessions in two conditions: a real meeting room (RE) and a similar meeting room in virtual environment (VE). Creative potential of 60 participants was assessed via the creative profiler. The results showed that at team level, fluency and originality were significantly improved in VE compared to RE. However, at individual level, the results suggested that VE did not favour everyone. Participants in VE with high risk-taking propensity were significantly more creative (fluency and originality) than the other participants (e.g., those with similar profile in RE as well as participants with low scores in risk taking in VE). Similar profile was observed for divergent thinking and mental flexibility but at a lesser extent. The results are discussed with regards to social and motivational causes, latent inhibition and attentional mechanisms involved in creative behaviour.
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