Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 18 January 2007

Model 9

The Trait Balancing Model

The literature on creativity often in the past degenerated into vast collections of “noticings”. These often took the form of “traits” that creative people or works were supposed to have. As such collections of traits got published and republished, people started noticing patterns among the traits. In particular, a great number of traits of creative people and work took the form of inverted “U” functions–too little of some value and no creativity resulted, too much of the same value and no creativity resulted. At some intermediate value, creativity was optimal.

Originality is one such trait–too much of it and people reject the work as outrageous and outside the discipline; too little of it and people reject the work as derivative and something anyone could imagine or do. Over the years a great number of such inverted “U” functions havebeen noticed (Andersson, 1997; Adams-Price, 1998; Greene, volume 2, 2002; Simonton, 2001; Steptoe, 1998; Sternberg, 1988).

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