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The Creative Moment

PDP Co-Founder and psychology researcher, James Vaughan, explores creativity in footballers with a focus on the coach’s perspective. What does it mean to foster creativity in players? How can we better understand the process of encouraging creative problem solving on the field? Vaughan offers practical insights and solutions to an often abstract topic.


Creativity is often described as the use of imagination to invent something. Creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson refines this idea by explaining creativity as ‘the process of having original ideas that have value’. The need for value in this definition, and understanding the accompanying complexities this brings, becomes essential when exploring creative behaviour in sport. While the context for creative behaviour may change – sport, art, dance, design, entertainment – decades of research have identified two fundamental ideas.

Firstly, that all humans have the capacity for creativity, in some domain, at some point in time (the key is to find this domain and maximise these moments in time). Secondly, that there are two key components of creative behaviour: novelty and functionality.

The novelty, or originality, of creative behaviour...

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