The 4Ps of innovation culture: conceptions of creatively engaging with information

Information Research
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Information Research: an international electronic journal, 2013, 18 (3)
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The paper provides a distillation of findings emerging from an ongoing series of investigations of the research practices of academics in a university context to foreground the creativity in our engagements with information. The empirical research involved an ethnographic exploration of the scholarly practices of two scholars engaged in the discovery, evaluation, use and generation of information and knowledge as part of their own ongoing research work. Findings reported in the paper are further supported by ongoing autoethnographic work associated with that fieldwork and a series of follow up explorations applying a similar approach. Through this research and writing emerged a heuristic (conceptualised as: plan, play, pressure, and pause) that might stimulate creative engagements with information. The paper discusses how scaffolding the four distinct but inter-related phase states represented in this heuristic can support an “innovative culture”. After introducing each of the four phase states, examples are provided that illustrate their interplay: i) the scholarly conference, ii) creative ecologies of learning, iii) conceptualisation of the heuristic itself. Discussion of the acute challenges associated with balancing these four states is followed by a call to broaden our conception of information and to engage more comprehensively with its potential as a catalyst for creative capacities. Active advocacy for systemic changes is required to expand our opportunities for nurturing creativity and innovation in all sectors of society.
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