Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 19 January 2007

Model 37

The Insight Model

For many people and many years the stereotypical image of creation was “eureka”, sudden insights that come out of nowhere. Actual

research has found that though insights indeed are sudden and though they often occur when the mind is semi-conscious not fully engaged,

they do not come from nowhere. They occur, always, after months or years of intense work in an area, tracking down dozens of failed possibilities,

accumulating failed solution attempts. In these well populated deserts of missing correctness and victory, insights occur.

The insight model of creativity presents both these parts–the desert of solution tries that do not work and accumulate maddeningly, and the

sudden appearance in the midst of such deserts of insights, sudden illuminations that show the way to solution instantly (Root-Bernstein,

1989; Sternberg and Davidson, 1995; Holyoak and Thagard, 1995; Greene, Journal, Sept. 1999). It breaks these down into steps in a process

of insight building and occurrence. Insights are fractal in nature–they occur on various size scales. Within larger insights are often smaller

insights. Within long term ones are often many short term ones. This model models all of these, on all size scales, with the same step by step

model. In a way, this is the foundation of all process models of creativity. Insight models, by breaking down “sudden illumination events”

into steps, began the break down of entire creative processes and careers into similar steps.

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