On Campus

Creativity leads to cheating

Innovative people more capable of justifying their bad behaviour

Creative people are more likely to cheat because they can find “original ways to bypass moral rules,” according to a recent study from Harvard Business School. Francesca Gino, who teaches business administration, and is one of the study’s authors, says her research is “a first step in uncovering some of the potential dark consequences of being creative.” While creativity is beneficial for organizations, “we show that creativity also helps in the rationalization process. It allows people to come up with a lot of excuses and justifications for why their behaviour isn’t bad,” Gino says. The study was conducted using five experiments consisting of between 71 and 111 participants.

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.