Creativity May Rely on ‘Teamwork’ in the Brain

Creativity May Rely on 'Teamwork' in the Brain-MainPhoto

Scientists may have discovered what makes a creative mind tick: stronger connections among brain regions that usually work in opposition to each other.

For eons, researchers have wondered what sets the da Vincis, Shakespeares and Einsteins apart. Results from this new study offer more evidence to debunk the popular notion that creativity is a “right brain” activity.

“There’s a lingering myth about the ‘right brain’ and ‘left brain.’ But creativity involves the whole brain,” said Roger Beaty, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University who led the research.

The study, of 163 young adults, found the most creative thinkers had greater “connectivity” across three brain areas: the default mode, salience network, and executive systems.

The findings offer a clearer idea of exactly what happens in the brain during creative thinking. And it all makes sense, according to Beaty.

The default mode network, he explained, is involved in our capacity to daydream and be “unconstrained” in thinking.

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SOURCES: Roger Beaty, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow, department of psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.; Rex Jung, Ph.D., clinical professor, neurosurgery, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque; Jan. 15, 2018, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, online

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