- Power, stability of power, and creativity
- Journal of Experimental Social Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 47 | 5
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Power hierarchies are an essential aspect of social organization, create stability and social order, and provide individuals with incentives to climb the hierarchical ladder. Extending previous work on power and creativity, we put forward that this relationship critically depends on both the stability of the power hierarchy and the relevance of creative efforts to power. Across three experiments, we show that when power positions are unstable, low power individuals are more flexible thinkers, are less avoidant and process information more globally. Consequently, they achieve more creative insights, especially when being creative is relevant to power. As such, when the power hierarchy is unstable, those lacking power hold the power to creativity.
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