A recent article in the Journal of Creative Behaviour, proposed a Socio-Cultural Manifesto for the purpose of advancing theory and research in the field of creativity studies (Glaveanu et al 2019). It set out a number of propositions or beliefs about creativity held by the signatories and briefly explored the implications of these for researchers in this field of study. We found the document useful to test our own views on creativity and it was gratifying to discover that our own explorations of the meaning and practice of creativity are closely aligned to the socio-cultural perspectives offered in the manifesto.
Manifestos are common in the field of education. Such documents identify and justify concerns, new needs and interests and propose changes to current practice. They provide a platform around which interested practitioners and institutions can cohere. A nice example is the Learning Outside the Classroom manifesto prepared by the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom (https://www.lotc.org.uk/), which sets out the case for why learning outside the classroom is important, how such learning might be achieved and what practitioners, schools and other organisations can do to promote and realise the ideals contained in the manifesto.
Another example, initiated by a group of educational practitioners, is Manifesto 15 (https://manifesto15.org/en/).
The need for higher education to pay more attention to the growth of imagination and the creative development of learners has been recognized for many years. As we get deeper into the 21st century the future has turned out to be even more uncertain, turbulent, challenging and disruptive than we ever imagined at the start of the millennium. An education system that does not commit to the development and recognition of learners as whole, imaginative and creative beings is not enabling them to prepare themselves for a future that none of us can imagine.
As a starting point for collective, bottom-up action the Creative Academic, #creativeHE and CIRCE networks will, through an open discursive process, develop a manifesto
to Advance Imagination and Creativity in HE Learning and Educational Practice. The Manifesto, and some of the related discussions, will be published in the April issue of Creative Academic Magazine (CAM#13) during World Creativity and Innovation Week (April 15-21, 2019). This will be our collective contribution to this important annual global event.
Q1 What are the most important reasons for why higher education needs to take seriously the development of learners’ imaginations and creativity and invest in educational practices that encourage and facilitate such development?
Q2 What are the important values, propositions and principles that need to underpin such a manifesto to encourage higher education to invest in educational practices that facilitate the development and recognition of learners’ imaginations and creativity.
Q3 What actions might be undertaken at the level of individual practitioner, department/ subject group, institution and whole system, to realise aspirations contained in the manifesto for a more creative future?
Join us at https://www.facebook.com/groups/creativeHE/
Norman Jackson & Chrissi Nerantzi
Co-Founders Creative Academic, co-facilitators #creativeHE
Director Centre for Imagination in Research, Culture and Education (CIRCE)
Glaveanu,V.P., Hanson, M.H., Baer, J., Barbot, B., Clapp,E.P., Hennessey, B., Kaufman, J.C., Lebuda, I., Lubart, T., Montuori, A., Ness, I.J. Plucker, J., Reiter‐Palmon, R., Sierra, Z., Simonton, D.K., Neves‐Pereira, M.S. and Sternberg, R.J. (2019) Advancing Creativity Theory and Research: A Socio‐cultural Manifesto Journal of Creative Beahviour 1-5 23 January 2019 Available at: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/jocb.395?fbclid=IwAR1OpJ2bmqneyQJECMchh7OpBHGRhg6e0ueTDZIz7mdXJHZ470xStsxpJUU
Jackson, N., Oliver, M., Shaw, M., & Wisdom, J. (Eds) (2006) Developing Creativity in Higher Education: An Imaginative Curriculum. London: RoutledgeFalmer.
Jackson N J (2008) Tackling the Wicked Problem of Creativity in Higher Education Surrey Centre for Excellence in Professional Training and Education Available at: http://imaginativecurriculumnetwork.pbworks.com/f/WICKED+PROBLEM+OF+CREATIVITY+IN+HIGHER+EDUCATION.pdf
Example Educational Manifestos
Learning Outside the Classroom MANIFESTO Council for Learning Outside the Classroom Available at: http://www.lotc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/G1.-LOtC-Manifesto.pdf
CONNECTED LEARNING MANIFESTO
Manifesto 15 Evolving Learning https://manifesto15.org/en/