The Composition of Creative Intelligence
TWCF Number
Project Duration
July 1 / 2024
- June 30 / 2026
Core Funding Area
Big Questions
Amount Awarded

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Joshua Shepherd
Institution Universitat Autonòma de Barcelona

Recent advances across neuroscience, cognitive psychology, philosophy and artificial intelligence are rapidly changing our understanding of the cognitive structure of creativity, and have raised the possibility of creativity in machines. These advances raise deep questions about the nature of creativity, its place in society, and its contribution to human flourishing. This project will use the methods of philosophy and theoretical science to address these questions, interfacing with insights across multiple disciplines.

More specifically, the aim is to analyze, integrate, and synthesize ideas regarding the composition of creative intelligence.

First, the project team seek to understand option generation – the processes that output, into the stream of consciousness, ideas about what actions to perform. They will study the contribution of cognitive flexibility to option generation, and will utilize data from cases of improvisation.

Second, they seek to understand the contribution of cognitive feelings – feelings like curiosity, boredom, confidence, fluency, and effort – to the guidance of creative thought and action.

Finally, they will leverage the unique perspective on creative intelligence this project will develop to insights this project aims to develop in order to consider aesthetic and ethical questions regarding the promises and perils of AI for scaffolding creative behavior.

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