Creativity is individual, and it is social. The social aspects of creativity have become of increasing interest as systems have emerged that mobilize large numbers of people to engage in creative tasks. We examine research related to collective intelligence and differentiate work on collective creativity from other collective activities by analyzing systems with respect to the tasks that are performed and the outputs that result. We conclude by suggesting how systems that generate collective creativity can be improved and how new systems might be constructed.
This review suggests the design space for collective creativity is large and mainly unexplored. By combining features of these different systems, we might discover new systems. Over time, the crowd itself may have something to say about this: members might want to contribute to their own destiny. Indeed, there is a feedback loop. Crowds configured in certain ways may achieve results that change the economic landscape, affecting the structures they work within. Then, a collective creativity system becomes a co-creation between the founders of the system and the crowd members, who both design the products and contribute to the design of the system. Out of this comes a kind of system that benefits society through its creative outputs and benefits participants through the mastery they attain.