An Indigenous Australian project-based perspective on creativity and research dissemination.
Sandy O’Sullivan raises important issues relevant to academic researchers everywhere, such as what counts as legitimate research output and how should it be assessed. As she points out, non-text based outputs are now generally acceptable in the arts, but is there as case for these in other areas too, especially in Indigenous research contexts? And when it comes to justifying what counts, who should justify this and what criteria should be used to do so?
Don't forget to watch Sandy's video at the end of this article too.
This article describes the contribution of creativity to human development in the new nation of Timor-Leste, exemplified in a case study of community art centre Afalyca. By taking a creative approach to the challenges of life in his developing country, the young leader of this enterprise, Marqy da Costa, is realising his own potential more fully and offering enriching experiences to others. The impact of his centre on a range of stakeholders, including staff, participants and the wider community is discussed.
For participants, the outcomes of their involvement include enjoyable opportunities for creative expression; valued recognition from national and international audiences; the broadening of life experience to encompass new possibilities for self-actualisation; skill development and income from employment and sales.
The factors that have contributed to Afalcya's creative achievements are examined. These include inspiration and assistance received from organisations and individuals in and outside of Timor, family support, and the age and gender of leaders. Also significant are founder Marqy's personal characteristics of artistic talent, social and language skills, love of learning, persistence and conciliatory approach to conflict. Barriers to the realisation of Afalcya's potential include lack of systemic recognition of the value of creativity for sustainable development, unsupportive bureaucracy and gender related restrictions of participation for women. The potential for similar initiatives to contribute to a positive future for Timorese people is explored.
Timor-Leste, creativity, arts participation, human development.
The culturally competent creative recognizes the dramatic effect that culture plays in the creative process. Identifying and mediating the influence of tradition, audience, and authority in the environment will enable greater potential for creative success.
Written by Dr Tara Grey Coste, Leadership Studies, University of Southern Maine; Cassandra Coste, Social Work, New York University and George Fish, Leadership Studies, University of Southern Maine
In this age of the global marketplace in which the world's people have become linked through unprecedented connectivity, it has become quite obvious that cultural competency is key to successful creativity. The culturally competent creative must be truly committed to the pursuit of multi-culturalism, truly committed to respecting another's values and beliefs and acknowledging that assumptions resulting from these values and beliefs are logically connected. The moment one expresses an idea to an audience the concept is no longer what it was in the author's mind as it now belongs to the audience. We would suggest that placing usefulness as perceived from within the value system of the audience would be a preferred place to start if a creative idea is to find success. What is of utmost importance is that we have some mastery of cultural competency as it may be applied to the pathways creative ideas take once they enter the public sphere.
Creativity, culture, process, context, competency, tradition, audience identity, authority
As the world has become more and more complex, the concern with creativity has increased (Runco, 2004). How can we improve our creative thinking abilities? Adams (1974) proposed that the process of consciously identifying conceptual blocks was essential for overcoming them and improving the ability to think creatively. A considerable number of studies have been conducted on factors that influence creativity. According to a review by Batey and Furnham (2006), much research has been directed to relationships between creativity, intelligence and personality. Moreover, studies have been conducted from diverse perspectives, such as motivation, affect, cognitive capacity, the social environment, culture and neurology (for reviews, see Hennessey & Amabile, 2010; Runco, 2004).