The Role of Creativity and Innovation in the Problem-Solving Process

What is a Problem?

A problem is a matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome –

Source: Jam Filled (2011) What is Creative Problem Solving. 31 October. Available at: (Accessed: 19 August 2021).

The Creative-Problem Solving Process

Albert Einstein observed that, “The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.”

The Creative Problem-Solving Process is an approach to solving problems in an innovative way by employing creativity in coming up with solutions that deliver value or improve a situation.

Stages of the Creative Problem-Solving Process

Creativity Techniques in Group Contexts

To arrive at the best solution to a problem, the creative thinker generates a lot of possible ideas from which he determines the best ones to pursue.

Different ways to generate ideas include but is not limited to:
i)  Brainstorming Sessions
ii)  Role Play Scenarios
iii) Mind Mapping
iv) Reverse Thinking
v)  Brainwriting
vi) SCAMMPERR (Substitute, Combine, Adapt, Modify, Put to another use, Eliminate, Rearrange, and Reverse)
vii) Attribute listing

Brainstorming sessions: A technique where a group of people come together to suggest as many spontaneous and new ideas as possible regarding a subject matter.

Role play scenarios: A technique that allows participants to explore real situations and interact with other people’s points of view.

Mind mapping: A technique that uses a diagram to arrange information in a hierarchical manner.

Reverse thinking: A technique where individuals brainstorm on the possible ways a problem can fail.

SCAMMPERR: A technique which uses checklists to create new product from existing ones.

Brain writing: A technique where participants write ideas on a subject matter for a few minutes without talking.

Attribute listing: This technique breaks problems or products into smaller units and explores different ways by which they can be transformed into something new.

The Role of Innovation in Problem-Solving

Innovation plays a vital role in solving problems. It goes beyond conventional methods of problem-solving. It explores possibilities and is an approach to solving problems creatively.

“Innovation is the ability to see change as an opportunity, not a threat” – Steve Jobs

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Sam Icon (Sampson Arhin) is a Professional Content Creator, Geographer, Blogger, Web Designer & Tech addict, Digital Advertiser, Preceptor and Entrepreneur.

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