Why Great Ideas Are Often Overlooked: A Review and Theoretical Analysis of Research on Idea Evaluation and Selection

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Group creativity is far more than the generation of ideas: Ultimately, creative ideas must be recognized, valued, and selected. In this chapter, we review and theoretically analyze the relevant literature on the recognition, evaluation, and selection of creative ideas in groups. In doing so, we will explain that both idea evaluation and idea selection show substantial room for improvement, with idea selection being especially problematic. We will argue that the underlying problem in effective idea evaluation and selection is the tension between originality and feasibility, and that highly original ideas tend to be disliked or rejected because they are perceived to be risky and unfeasible. Situational or personal factors that make implementation or feasibility concerns more salient will therefore hinder creative idea selection. After discussing the literature, we will address some possible solutions and directions for future research.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Group Creativity
EditorsPaul B. Paulus, Bernard A. Nijstad
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9780190648091
ISBN (Print)9780190648077
Publication statusPublished - 24-Jun-2019


  • idea selection
  • idea evaluation
  • originality
  • feasibility

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