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Keith Sawyer, PhD, is associate professor of psychology, education, and business at Washington University in St. Louis. An accomplished jazz pianist and former video game designer for Atari, he has published widely on the topics of collaboration and creativity. His book Group Genius won awards from Library Journal and (800) CEO-READ and has been translated into many languages. He is the proud owner of a collection of vintage Grateful Dead bootleg tapes, his childhood piano teacher's old (but working) accordion, and a 1982 BMW motorcycle (also working). To learn more, visit keithsawyer.com.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Choosing Creativity 1
Step One ASK: How the Right Questions Lead to the Most Novel Answers 19
Find the Question
Search the Space
Transform the Problem
Step Two LEARN: How to Prepare Your Mind for Constant Creativity 49
Master Your Domain
Balance Specialty with Generality
Step Three LOOK: How to Be Aware of the Answers All Around You 73
Use Fresh Eyes
Grab New Sights and Cool Sounds
Render It Visible
Step Four PLAY: How to Free Your Mind to Imagine Possible Worlds 101
Find the Right Box
Be a Beginner
Step Five THINK: How to Have Way More Ideas Than You’ll Ever Need 129
Step Six FUSE: How to Combine Ideas in Surprising NewWays 153
Do a People Mash-Up
Step Seven CHOOSE: How to Pick the Best Ideas and Then Make Them Even Better 173
Know What You’re Looking For
Host an Idea Competition
Look Past the Good
Edit, Revise, Improve
Step Eight MAKE: How Getting Your Ideas Out into the World Drives Creativity Forward 195
Make It Concrete
Reflect on It
Appendix A: Outline of All of the Steps, Practices, and Techniques 229
Appendix B: The Research Behind the Eight Steps 237
About the Author 263