What is Organizational Creativity?
This chapter will consider the literature on organizational creativity. This corpus of literature is rather heterogeneous, comprising contributions from such diverse disciplines as psychology, management studies, sociology, and even the humanities (literature theory and history). The scope of the literature is therefore rather broad, ranging from, on the one hand, laboratory research on decision making under controlled conditions and, on the other, biographically oriented essays on the work of individual artists. The literature on creativity is then not unified and integrated, but may instead be regarded as a loosely grouped series of statements and propositions on what creativity is, what its consequences are, and how it can be employed purposefully. In addition, the idea of creativity is very much playing a role in the public imaginary as some superhuman capacity to conceive of extraordinary things which certain individuals are endowed with. As a consequence, the theoretical analysis of creativity qua theoretical concept needs to address this everyday view of creativity as something that occurs disruptively in unpredictable occasions among extraordinarily talented individuals. In fact, this mythological image of creativity is counterproductive to the endeavour of managing creativity as an organization resource similar to knowledge or technology because it postulates that creativity is highly unpredictable.
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