Test 3

Brendon Michael Cummiskey, Washington University in St. Louis


Evaluating creativity is a key role for any organization interested in innovation and how that evaluation occurs has been a focal point of researchers. Although creativity scholars have made strides in understanding creativity evaluations, questions remain about the role that process information plays in the evaluation. While most creativity research involves some type of outcome, such as an idea or product, the evaluators often have no description of the creator’s work process or any understanding of the idea or product’s creation. In this dissertation, I build upon the existing evaluation literature and critically examine how process information may influence the evaluation of an outcome’s creativity. In doing so, I investigate narratives of both iteration and insight process information, both of which are representative of creative work and likely to influence an evaluator’s perception. I validated materials to manipulate the narratives of creative process information and conducted an experimental study to determine how they affected perceptions of creativity. In doing so, I also considered the role of an evaluator’s growth creative mindset and how evaluators may differentially interpret and perceive the process information and final product depending on their mindset. The results offer some support that an evaluator’s growth creative mindset matters for creativity evaluations, but the findings do not support the interaction effect hypotheses between an evaluator’s growth creative mindset and process information on a product’s perceived creativity. Post-hoc analyses suggest that the effects of growth creative mindset occur predominantly via the utility of the product, while not affecting the perceived novelty. Post-hoc analyses also found a significantly negative effect of iteration process information on a product’s perceived utility. This dissertation has implications for any creators who need to discuss or describe their work to potential evaluators like colleagues or managers, as well as for researchers interested in understanding more about the multi-faceted nature of creative evaluations. The implications of this work also has the potential to increase in relevance as work from home policies and organizational norms change in a Post-Pandemic world where individuals have more autonomy and control about what others see and know abouttheir work process.