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DESIGN OF A CREATIVE SOCIETY

THE CHARECTERISTICS OF A CREATIVE SOCIETY:


- Social creativity comes into existence due to the challenge facing a society and an innovative response to it by the elite of that society. - The stimulus to social creativity is provided by challenges such as wars, natural calamities, social upheavals, conquest, colonization, opening up to foreign trade and influence and so forth. - A culture that nurtures diversity, gives ample scope for inventions. Such societies progress because of differences between the individuals. - Another habit worth nurturing is self awareness as a way of understanding how one affects others. People are free to think in a creative society and act divergently, but without losing their receptivity to those that differ from them. - Ability to arrive at creative compromises ie ability to secure win win solutions. Viewing others as part of ones own large family, rather than as enemies to be vanquished, helps nurturant resolution of conflicts. - Sense of mutuality and sharing, we must be mindful of our obligations as of our rights. When we take, we must also give. - The lowest levels in society must get a chance to grow and be creative, to have enriched jobs and satisfaction from doing interesting and challenging work.

- Availability of cultural and physical means. Ex: English language. It helps mass literacy. The people could be taught many basic concepts relating to the work ethic, the scientific attitude, cooperative action and self reliance. - Openness or receptivity to cultural stimuli. -There has to be balance between short term and long term development. Religious cultures emphasize the long term objectives excessively, primitive cultures emphasize immediate gratification. - Free access to cultural media for all without discrimination. There should be no racial, religious, sexual or social class bars to education, libraries, musuems, cinemas, news and so forth. - Elimination of oppression as a spur to creativity. Creativity will be at a low level when a society is highly oppressed as under a colonial rule. - Exposure to different cultural stimuli.Trade, conquest, tourism or diplomatic relations can get a society exposure to other quite different cultures. - Tolerance for and interest in diverging views - Interaction of significant persons working in a group for creating an extraordinary effect. - Incentives and awards help the creative effort. - Accumulation of ideas in a culture. The state of knowledge and the degree of its elaboration, the techniques and instruments one can use make some new developments

possible and others impossible. - The concentration of ideas in individuals in the society help the society to be creative. - Sharp social class differences and inequalities can, in societies permitting upward mobility, trigger off imitations, compromises and innovations on the part of communities lower on the social strata. - The expectation of change: Innovation flourishes in an atmosphere wherein there is anticipation of change. - Independence from authority: Greater the freedom of the individual to explore his world of experience and to organise its elements, the greater the likelihood of new ideas coming into being. - The healthy competition of rivals, such that they earn their rewards on the basis of performance. - Deprivation of essentials: Serious deprivation can be paralyzing for artisitc, philosophical or scientific creativity. - A change in the dominant characteristic of a culture such as allegiance to the caste system or in the system of production may trigger a chain reaction of changes such as marriage practices, the form of government. - Access that innovative individuals have to positions of power in a society.

MODEL OF A CREATIVE SOCIETY / ELEMENTS OF DESIGN OF A CREATIVE SOCIETY

The model of a creative society summarizes the following elements.


1) Needed Resources: Well defined language Availability of scientific and technical knowledge

Physical facilities for experimentation


Educational system that produces specialists as well as some well informed generalists. Forums where bright minds can interact. Tolerance for and encouragement to cultural diversity Receptivity to alien ideas and experiences. Social emphasis on finding win-win solutions of conflict Respect for vital traditions but equal commitment to progress and change Relief from oppressive social, economic and political conditions.

2) Needed norms:

3) Needed mechanisms for providing autonomy to gifted individuals:

Democratic political system

Institutions that take care of basic human needs (welfare state, cooperatives, joint family, caste, etc)

Freedom from excessive bureaucratic and political control of social and economic activities, Decentralization of regulation, Emphasis on control of results rather than procedures, Emphasis on self regulation by institutions. Communication of external challenges and threats to the gifted, and giving them the opportunity to contribute to meeting these challenges.
Identification of major internal challenges, their communication to the gifted, and creation of opportunity for them to contribute to the meeting of these internal challenges. Vigorous fostering of international and inter cultural contracts. A world orientation in school curriculum. Highlighting of models of creative achievement. Public reward for creative accomplishments. Fostering of inter-organizational competition, kept ethical, however, by law, custom, self regulation, etc.

4) Needed stimuli for creativity:

- Policy of moderate deprivation (through some import control, vigorous exports, high interest rates and financial stringency, etc.)

- Adoption of a bold and risky growth and survival strategy by the government and

and other core institutions. - Change through government and social action, of those social parameters (such as child rearing and marriage practices that can trigger a chain of innovations) Giving the traditional have nots access to political and economic power and opportunities for upward mobility.

5) Needed management of strategic institutions, such as government, strategic enterprises, institutions of higher learning etc - Meritocracy - Decentralization of operating decisions. - Use of an effective management performance information and control system - Institutionalization of a culture of flexibility, results orientation, calculated risk taking, innovation, face to face resolution of conflicts and acceptance of challenging tasks by the institutions and their members. - Adoption of inspiring institutional missions.

STRATEGIES FOR TRANSFORMING NON INNOVATIVE CULTURES:


A change agents role in transforming a non innovative culture is as follows. 1) He must not threaten its members with jargon and show of knowledge, nor with aggressiveness.

2) Looking out for small or big problems of the collectivity in which one can quitely assist is a way of building the confidence of others in the change agent.

3) Nudging the collectivity or powerful members of the collectivity to take on challenges that they can not fulfill with conventional methods is a way of unfreezing the collectivity and making it receptive to new ways of taking the challenge.
4) Having the collectivity or powerful individuals in it, brainstorm or list alternatives without inhibition or evaluation in responding to a challenge or a crisis may lead to a success experience and therefore to interest in creative problem solving and innovating. 5) Fear of failure is the great enemy of innovativeness. If the change agent can bring up real life examples of people who dared and thereby succeeded, considerable unblocking may be expected. 6) Investments on books, tools can facilitate creativity and innovation. 7) Some of the members may experience failure and frustration. The change agent needs to change his strategy from being that of a provoker of change to one of consolidator of change. NECESSITY OF A CREATIVE SOCIETY: - A creative society is an economic necessity for the worlds poor nations. - The government seeks to manage investment bureaucratically ie by standardisation, rules, hierarchy control. Thus investments are mismanaged and their expected benefits are poorly realized. The absence of innovative spirit leads to wholesale

import of foreign technology with scant regard to to the nations requirements. - Minor innovations in eating, living, working habits can bring about changes in living standards in the underdeveloped countries. Ex: Family planning, protein rich diet, preventive health care, use of better methods of farming, literacy Innovation in society will have more impact on living standards than on investments.

Ex: Use of low cost housing technique developed by Laurrie Baker could permit building more number of houses with the same money.
- The innovative society can guide changes at the society level and also at the level of small slices of society such as family, caste, village, work organisation, community and so forth.