Evil Genius? How Dishonesty Can Lead to Greater Creativity

Motivation: Previous research has found a correlation between dishonesty and creativity but it was not clear whether being dishonest actually causes an increase in creativity so the researchers sought to test this. This is important because if being dishonest does cause creativity then companies may be able to use this to their advantage with their employees.


Experiment 1


Hypothesis: The researchers hypothesized that people will be more creative after being dishonest because being dishonest creates a certain type of freedom.


Design and Procedure: The researchers conducted an experiment where they randomly assigned people to lie or tell the truth about their performance on a computer-based math-and-logic game. The independent variable was honesty. Afterwards, the researchers gave participants a problem solving task called the Dunker candle problem. The researchers measured creativity (dependent variable) by performance on the Dunker candle problem (operationalization).


Findings: The major findings are that dishonesty can increase creativity (as measured by the Dunker candle problem) potentially because people are in an unconstrained state when they lie.


Experiment 2




Design and Procedure:




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Second training material reflection here.

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