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Collaborative Creativity

Human creativity represents an enigma to the research community: It is all but impossible to describe the process in unequivocal terms, yet there is a strong desire to promote and encourage this uniquely human activity. Within the realm of human-computer interaction, the challenge is to understand in what ways technology can enhance the creative process. In the past, research on creativity focused on the individual and the individual's internal cognitive processes. As a result, there exists a legacy of guidelines and frameworks for building computer-based tools that encourage and promote individual creativity. However, recent research has begun to paint a more complicated picture of creativity that highlights the importance of social interactions, mentoring, and collaboration in creative work [1, 4, 6, 8]. The importance of analyzing creativity in this more holistic sense is readily apparent when one considers that most creative pursuits in industry involve interdisciplinary teams working together to develop a product that cannot be created by a single individual alone. The question for HCI research becomes then: What tools, methodologies, and practices can support creativity of individuals in interdisciplinary teams?

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