Society Functions Best with an Intermediate Level of Creativity

Abstract

In a society, a proportion of the individuals can benefit from creativity without being creative themselves by copying the creators. This paper uses an agent-based model of cultural evolution to investigate how society is affected by different levels of individual creativity. We performed a time series analysis of the mean fitness of ideas across the artificial society varying both the percentage of creators, C, and how creative they are, p using two discounting methods. Both analyses revealed a valley in the adaptive landscape, indicating a tradeoff between C and p. The results suggest that excess creativity at the individual level can be detrimental at the level of the society because creators invest in unproven ideas at the expense of propagating proven ideas.


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