Armyanskii ln., 4-2, Moscow, 101000, Russia


Bogdan Medvedev1, Sergey Yagolkovskiy1
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation

Functional Fixedness and Its Role in Reducing Productivity of Creative Thinking

2020. Vol. 17. No. 3. P. 414–427 [issue contents]

There is a tendency in contemporary psychology to intensify research on creativity. Numerous theories and models examine this phenomenon. An important direction in creativity research is the identification and analysis of psychological factors, which inhibit creative thinking. One of them is functional fixedness. This phenomenon has attracted researchers’ attention for a long time. On the other hand, it should be examined in more depth because human life is changing intensively in contemporary world. Functional fixedness restricts person's creative abilities and supports the stereotypical way of thinking. This concept was introduced by K. Duncker (1945), who considered functional fixedness as one of the most powerful "antagonists" of creative thinking. In academic literature, numerous synonyms of this term have been introduced, such as  “problem-solving set” (Kearsley, 1975), "rigidity" (Leach, 1967), "difficulty in re-structuring" (Wertheimer, 1959). At the same time, there is a lack of research systematizing results of the classic theoretical and empirical studies on functional fixedness. The present study seems to partially fill this gap. The authors reveal and analyze the most important aspects and factors of creative thinking, which can help to understand the nature and negative role of functional fixedness in creative thinking. Different definitions of functional fixedness, most influential theories and models addressing this phenomenon, as well as forms of manifestation of functional fixedness in various spheres of individual productive activity are considered. This work is continued by the analysis of psychological methods to loosen functional fixedness.

Citation: Medvedev B., Yagolkovskiy S. (2020) Funktsional'naya fiksirovannost' i ee rol' v snizhenii produktivnosti tvorcheskogo myshleniya [  Functional Fixedness and Its Role in Reducing Productivity of Creative Thinking]. Psychology. Journal of Higher School of Economics, vol. 17, no 3, pp. 414-427 (in Russian)
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