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10 Types of Idea Generation

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Idea generation is the process of creating a list of ideas. Ideas can include goals, strategies, concepts, designs, styles, plans, stories, actions, models, questions and answers. Creative processes typically call for generating a large number of ideas and then screening them. The following are common types of idea generation.

Brainstorming

Allowing ideas to flow out without validation or constraint.

Abstraction

Take a specific concept and making it more general.

Drawing

Visualizing things such as the concepts surrounding your problem space.

Lists

Generating lists such as a mece list for a topic.

Inspiration

Looking for creative inspiration from sources such as art, music, writing, media, design, science, nature, society, culture and technology.

Incubation

Allowing time to pass while thinking. For example, taking a walk or sleeping may allow your mind to come up with something.

Thought Experiment

Using an analogy to model your problem space.

Conversations

Techniques that draw on collective intelligence such as a meeting.

Play

Thinking about your problem space while in a lighthearted frame of mind.

First Principles

Applying foundational principles to your problem space.
Overview: Idea Generation
Type
Definition
The process of creating a list of ideas.
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