Views on creativity, environmental sustainability and their integrated development

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review


In the modern paradigm of sustainability, the role of creativity is of growing significance. No literature was found to have explored the relationship of creativity and environmental sustainability, in the perspective of university students. It is unsure—how our university students perceive them, especially for students of different backgrounds. This study aims at investigating the views of university students on human creativity (HC) and environmental sustainability (ES), and how these two views might affect their supportiveness and understanding of HC-ES integrated development. Case studies of four university students were conducted. They were carefully chosen in an education university of Hong Kong, a place where east-west culture meets. The Self-determination Theory and the Four-C Creativity Model were adopted to frame this study and to analyze its data. Two rounds of interview were conducted with interview scripts transcribed for content analysis. Results showed that the university students hold quite diverse views on HC, ES and HC-ES relationships. The students with general creativity training and/or authentic experiences in ES/HC were found to adopt a little-C and mini-C creativity conception and a self-determined ES approach, which subsequently bought a greater support to HC-ES integrated development/education. Based on the present findings, creativity training is recommended to environmental or sustainability programme in university education. Adopted the case study method, the present research has finally revealed the complexity of this seemingly simple issue, and paves the way for future creative environmental development and its research studies. Copyright © 2018 by author and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)719-743
JournalCreative Education
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018


Cheng, V. M. Y. (2018). Views on creativity, environmental sustainability and their integrated development. Creative Education, 9(5), 719-743. doi: 10.4236/ce.2018.95054


  • Creativity
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Integration
  • Views
  • University students


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