Living Reference Work Entry

Handbook of Anticipation

pp 1-13

Date: Latest Version

Creativity and Anticipation

  • Giovanni Emanuele CorazzaAffiliated withUniversity of Bologna, Marconi Institute for Creativity Email author 


In this chapter, in-depth analysis and comparison of the creativity and anticipation constructs are performed. At a first glance, it is immediately apparent that there are common grounds in these future goal-oriented behaviors, both pertaining to the realm of nonlinear dynamic systems and complexity. But their relationship turns out to be far from obvious. There are commonalities, in that they are both adaptive factors in human evolution, they share a need for countering skepticism on a scientific approach, they are both process-oriented, and they are characterized by drive and motivation towards a preferable future. However, there are also significant differences: while anticipation can be interpreted as a new and general point of view on all sciences, creativity is a very special exception; the champions of the two disciplines, geniuses and prophets, have quite distinct roles in society; for creativity, there exists a literature on the measurement of traits and abilities of the creative person, as well as a creative industry, while there appears to be no parallel in the realm of anticipation. Once the above similarities and distinctions are established, we show how the two constructs can cooperate in devising preferable futures, in the estimation of creative ideas, in producing a fruitful mindset and motivation for challenges, in awakening latents. On the other hand, we also discuss how they can be in contrast: continuity (as opposed to creativity) could improve anticipation; imagining harsh futures could reduce the boldness of the creator; and finally creativity and anticipation could be used to defy each other. The chapter is concluded by a short discussion on societal evolution implications, with the introduction of artificial intelligent agents, and on the necessary modifications to the educational system.


Creativity Anticipation Dynamic process Divergent thinking Originality Effectiveness Education Forecast Foresight Genius Strategic thinking Adaptive behavior Human evolution