Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

Research Paper


Creativity is an important precondition of innovation. However, the management of creativity-intensive processes (CIPs) is beyond the scope of standard methodologies for business process standardization and automation because of the contradictory properties of CIPs, which require both process structure and creative freedom. We develop an explanatory design theory based on theoretical constructs from BPM theory, creativity research, and collaboration engineering, with the core component of an integrated IS architecture that facilitates the design of systems providing comprehensive support for CIPs. Automated control of structured processes and support of idea development in groups increase process efficiency and creative performance. Evaluation of a sub-portion of an expository instantiation (CreativeFlow) of the architecture in a laboratory experiment suggests that working with CreativeFlow leads to ideas that are more specific, while working without the tool generates ideas that are more feasible. Further, idea evaluation support of CreativeFlow must be improved in order to increase ideas’ feasibility and relevance. The validity of our theory is derived from a deductive development approach. We indicate limitations and further research.