Cultivating interdisciplinary team creativity through an intensive design competition

Soo Jeoung Han, Mehrangiz Abadi, Bora Jin, Jie Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Purpose: The authors examined team-learning processes in short-term student project teams operating in an intensive design competition at a public university. The purpose of this paper is to explore the critical facilitators, inhibitors and processes for fostering students' creativity within interdisciplinary design teams in higher education. Design/methodology/approach: The authors used a qualitative design to explore facilitators, inhibitors and critical processes in interdisciplinary student project teams. They conducted focus group interviews with three winning interdisciplinary teams that participated in a three-day design competition and used a constant comparison to analyze the data. Findings: The authors identified themes that contributed to creativity at the individual level, the team level and the resource level. The key findings included 12 critical team process phases to achieve one common goal. Originality/value: The findings of the study yielded to a holistic model of interdisciplinary team development for creativity. Implications for educators and practitioners and suggestions for researchers to expand the interdisciplinary team process model were discussed to facilitate interdisciplinary team creativity in higher education.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)757-772
Number of pages16
JournalHigher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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