S+I Research Seminar – Frank Ulrich – Results from a Design Theory Evaluation for Systems that Support Divergent thinking in Idea Evaluation

When and Where: Wednesday 15 October, 12:00-13:00, Room 0.2.90 – Bring your lunch!

Presenter: Frank Ulrich

Title: Results from a Design Theory Evaluation for Systems that Support Divergent thinking in Idea Evaluation

Abstract: Existing theory in idea evaluation raises an interesting paradox. On one hand, idea evaluation is necessary in most modern organizations to discover the level of novelty and usefulness in new ideas. On the other hand, idea evaluation hinders creativity by only supporting convergent thinking (narrowing down ideas to a few tangible solutions), while divergent thinking (the creation of wild and novel thoughts patterns) is ignored. In this session, this view of idea evaluation is challenged through the creation of a design theory for idea evaluation in Group Creativity Support System (GCSS). During the session, I will present the results from the practical use of a GCSS in a Danish research department. The results will show that managers can insert value creation from idea evaluation directly into the creative process without hindering divergent thinking. The findings challenge Osborne’s (1957) premises of idea evaluation only supporting divergent thinking.

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