Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 18 January 2007

Model 7

The Culture Mixing Model

This model is one of my favorites. In its pure form, it says that creativity is merely the work that comes from people who simultaneously live and work in half a dozen or more cultures (Segel, 1987; Rothschild, 2001; Paz, 1995; Greene, Journal, March, 2000; Detert et al, 2000; Munch and Smelser, 1992; Taylor, 1998). A Jewish scholar, trained in math but working in physics, born in Germany but working in Switzerland, married but an adulterer, graduated with a doctorate but working as a government office clerk, for example, embodies five conflicted cultures within him–religion, discipline, nationality, sexuality, and profession. Such was Einstein. In its pure form this model says that ordinary work, attempted by people embodying many culture differences simultaneously, nearly inevitably ends up being things creative. The more the cultures conflicted, the greater their clash and conflict, the greater the creativity that results. In its less pure form, this model suggests creativity occurs when incompatible value systems intersect, when cultures clash. The diversity of what clashes and the detail and thorough-goingness of their interaction both independently determine the creativity of the result of their clash.



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