In this paper, we develop theory and hypotheses on how culture affects creativity. Our theory development is founded on the premise that a country’s culture exerts a general effect on its people, though individual and situational differences might render some people more susceptible than others to culture’s influence. We further differentiate creative engagement from performance. Engagement has to do with one’s motivation and self-efficacy to attempt a creative task whereas performance has to do with one’s effectiveness at the task. Little research to date has explicitly examined creative engagement—whether an individual takes on a creative challenge in the first place—but attempting a creative task does not necessarily guarantee success. Cultural tightness and distance may differentially influence creativity engagement and success. We test our theory with data from a creative crowdsourcing platform that spans multiple countries on several continents, an ideal context in which to investigate research questions on global engagement and success in creative endeavors.
the Social Psychology of Creativity