The Keynote Speech of Mark Runco at the MIC Conference 2013


The role of creativity measurement in efforts to support invention

Creativity plays an important role in many important human processes, including adaptation, evolution, and invention. Care must be taken, however, to define creativity such that the contributions are clearly understood. Creativity plays a role in each of those processes, but it is not the only influence on them. Invention, for example, also requires knowledge and sometimes even mastery of a field. Additional care must be taken when attempting to fulfill creative potentials. If these potentials are fulfilled, adaptation, evolution, and invention are in turn much more likely. Yet creativity is notoriously difficult to measure, and too often attempted to fulfill potentials are misguided by inaccurate measurements. This presentation covers conceptual relationships between creativity and invention and the turns to some of the problems involved in measurement. Perhaps the overarching issue for creativity measurement is follows from the requirement of originality. All creative things are original. Originality is necessary, but not sufficient for creativity. Originality implies that something new is brought into existence; but how can we develop measurement methods for something that does not yet exist? This and other issues involved in creativity and invention are to be explored.


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