The transformational creativity hypothesis

Graeme D Ritchie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The work of Boden on the nature of creativity has been
extremely influential, particularly the hypothesis that the highest form of
creativity results from transformation of a conceptual space. We consider how
these ideas could be made more precise, and hence become amenable to empirical
testing. This requires some reconsideration of foundational assumptions
about computational creativity. We set down the abstract requirements for a
conceptual space, review some possible types of formal model, and discuss how
it might be possible experimentally to falsify (or corroborate) this hypothesis.
We conclude that the central terms (conceptual space, transformation)
are still too vaguely defined to support falsifiable claims, but that this is not
an obstacle to writing creative computer programs.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-266
Number of pages26
JournalNew Generation Computing
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • transformational creativity
  • conceptual space
  • computational creativity
  • empirical criteria
  • Exploratory creativity


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