Experts identify 14 themes of creativity

The elusive and complex components of creativity have been identified by experts at the University of Sussex and the University of Kent.

Dr Bill Keller, a language expert in the School of Engineering and Informatics at Sussex, worked with Kent’s Dr Anna Jordanous to define the language people use when talking about creativity, known as computational creativity. With that knowledge it becomes possible to make computer programs use this language too.

Dr Keller and Dr Jordanous looked at what people say when they talk about "what is creativity" in academic discussions, from various disciplines - psychology, arts, business, and computational creativity. 

In an article for the journal PLOS ONE, they describe a unique approach to developing a suitable model of how creative behaviour emerges that is based on the words people use to describe it.

Computational creativity is a relatively new field of research into computer systems that exhibit creative behaviours.

Using language-analysis software, they identified the creative words and grouped them into clusters. These are considered to be 14 components of creativity. These clusters have been used to evaluate the creativity of computational systems, and are expected to be a useful resource for other researchers in computational creativity, as well as forming a basis for the automated evaluation of creative systems.

The clusters are:

  • Active involvement & persistence
  • Dealing with uncertainty
  • Domain competence
  • General Intellect
  • Generating results
  • Independence & freedom
  • Intention & emotional involvement
  • Originality
  • Progression & development
  • Social interaction and communication
  • Spontaneity & subconscious processing
  • Thinking & evaluation
  • Value
  • Variety, divergence & experimentation

By: James Hakner
Last updated: Thursday, 20 October 2016