Building up creativity


Dance Your PhD 2017 - Building up creativity

Words from Judit Pétervári

My PhD research is about trying to figure out what happens in people’s head while they are evaluating creative ideas. Specifically, laypeople and experts are compared to see what characteristics of information processing are influencing their judgment of creativity. In this video, creativity is a room which needs to be furnished in order to see how the different components add up.

First, we look into a layperson’s thoughts to see how four creativity-related criteria (usefulness, originality, riskiness & the potential for growth) are combined for assessing a creative idea. What we see is that there is a lot of bouncing and tension; “random noise” must be noted in the judgment process. Nevertheless, laypeople are found to possess a robust internalized model of creativity, based on which their judgment can be predicted. They rely on all four characteristic features but to varying degrees.

Since the research concerned creative ideas related to making cities more vibrant, functional ideas were preferred. In the video, usefulness and originality are struggling with each other. At the end of the battle, usefulness gets on top, as it has twice as much predictive power of creativity compared to originality. Higher amount of risk and a higher potential for growth are both associated with finding an idea more creative but their predictive power is much smaller than of utility’s.

Finally, we look into an expert’s head. The results suggest that experts and non-experts disagree in all aspects of assessment except of how useful an idea is. Experts are much more confident about which criteria should be used to evaluate creative ideas (which is why the criteria are moving synchronised this time) and throughout the years, they develop a more or less stable rating system, working almost with clockwork precision.

Special thanks to my PhD supervisors, Magda Osman & Joydeep Bhattacharya, as well as to my institution, the School of Biological and Chemical Sciences at Queen Mary University of London Also to Artus Stúdió, Magdolna Fodor, Péter Goretić, Natália Kovács, Erik Lakatos, Péter Novák, Gábor Szűcs, Márton Túry, Dániel Vaszari, Gabriella Zettwitz, Tamás Zöldy


Some links

Project team

  • Judit Pétervári - Cast (Usefulness)
  • Péter István Nagy - Cast (Originality)
  • Fanni Szilvás - Cast (Riskiness)
  • Luca Dömötör - Cast (Potential for growth)
  • Krisztina Bogó - Cast (Random noise)
  • Krisztina Andrási - Cast (Layperson)
  • István Micsinai - Cast (Expert)
  • Kristóf Widder - Director & choreographer
  • Katinka Rémi - Assistant director
  • Mónika Szelei - Production manager
  • Borbála Hakkel - Production designer
  • Flóra Mátyás - Production assistant
  • Jérôme Li-Thiao-Té - Music
  • Júlia Vaszari - Director of photography
  • Máté Lauber & Dániel Császár - Assistant camera
  • Péter Tamás & Márton F. Tóth - B camera
  • Orsolya Soltész - Editor
  • Kolos Bolla - Sound editor
  • Júlia Jakabfy - Hair
  • Zsófia Kostyó-Pajer - Make-up