Creativity’s Role in Education

February 7, 2013 — 2 Comments

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It was good to see a strong focus on education at Davos this year. One session at the Annual Meeting that I particularly enjoyed discussed the addition of creative and artistic education to the traditional STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) agenda. John MaedaCarol BeckerJustine Cassell and Tomas Saraceno made a compelling case for the benefits of cross-fertilization between arts and sciences.

Artist Tomas Saraceno showed an inspiring example of how science can help art achieve its creative goals and, along the way, create new science. Carol Becker, Dean of the School of the Arts at Columbia University, talked about how the arts helps develop, what she calls, the “particularity” of the person. The idea of individuality and unique creative contribution would seem to have a role in both the arts and the sciences.

The overall conclusion from the session was that creativity has an essential role to play in education, whether for the purposes of enhancing technical innovation or for creating well-rounded graduates who can truly contribute to society.

For more thoughts on why design is a perfect lens through which to look at the tensions in education, read my World Economic Forum post here.

(Posted also on my LinkedIn Thought Leader blog)

Tim Brown

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2 responses to Creativity’s Role in Education

  1. Hello!
    Speaking of arts and creativity in relation to STEM subjects is a step in the right direction. As a teacher, ed. technology researcher and practicing artist, I understand only too well the important role the arts can play in learning – be it scientific concepts, math or literature.
    I am wondering if a possible further step would be to emphasize creativity as an approach – a way of working, for example as explicated in the writings of David Perkins (Harvard Grad. School of Ed.) rather than a talent limited to the arts alone.
    Arts and creativity are often mentioned together possibly leading to the misguided notion that only artists can be creative.

  2. Some like to blame scientists for the demise of faith in our world. Some even suggest that most scientists are “amoral hedonists that use their belief system as a way to justify their “lifestyle” and encourage others to join them”. This criticism is unfortunate! Most scientists are disciplined, rational thinkers that live lives that are no more amoral than most Christians. Their dedication and devotion to their careers have been instrumental in bringing us advancements in health care, communication, transportation, food production, and all the modern conveniences of life that we all take for granted.

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