The Trade-off between Novelty and Usefulness: Cultural Cognitive Differences and Creativity
Academy of Management
ISSN or ISBN
Creativity and Innovation have become critical organizational capabilities in today’s global environment and leveraging creative potential of employees across various cultural contexts has become increasingly important. Although recognized among researchers, cross-cultural differences in creativity are not yet well understood. We contribute to this line of research by constructing a theoretical model of cross-cultural creativity that focuses on cultural differences in cognition (i.e., holistic vs. analytic thinking) that affect the evaluation of creative ideas. Our cognitive perspective is built on a framework that explicitly highlights the interrelationship between an idea’s novelty and its usefulness and complements prevalent social or normative approaches to explain cross-cultural differences in creativity. We argue that cognitive differences influence the trade off relationship between novelty and usefulness and in combination with select organizational factors drive evaluation of ideas.
McCarthy, Marina; Chen, Chao C.; and McNamee, Robert, "The Trade-off between Novelty and Usefulness: Cultural Cognitive Differences and Creativity" (2013). HCBE Faculty Articles. 1131.