International Practice Development Journal


Title of ArticleEditorial
Type of ArticleEditorial
Author/sJan Dewing
ReferenceVolume 2, Issue 1, Editorial
Date of PublicationMay 2012
KeywordsInternational Practice Development Journal


Yet again I recently heard someone saying they weren’t a creative person … yet sitting in front of me I saw a woman who expressed creativity in several different ways before she even uttered a word. What is it that we think creativity is? I may just start referring to ‘everyday creativity’ to down play it or make it seems more accessible. In healthcare, even though we are not working in what may be considered by some, a creative field, we must come up with new insights, ideas and ways of working in order to improve patient care and enhance services. Often this means we are exploring and playing about with patterns in our selves, our workplaces and organisations. This activity needs some courage as well as creativity, as we are being driven ever more to measure in isolation, micro aspects of our work. Standing back and looking at wholeness is a different skill. It is also challenging when carried out in busy workplaces where being rushed is the order of the day. It was De Bono (see who said:

‘There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns.’

According to the IBM Global Chief Executive Officers (CEO) Study (2010), which surveyed 1,500 CEOs from 60 countries and 33 industries worldwide, CEOs believe that, more than rigor, discipline, integrity or even vision, successfully navigating an increasingly complex world will require creativity.

Of course the imagining and thinking of new things is a prerequisite to doing things in a new way – or innovating; something else healthcare practitioners are going to need to get better at doing. Each of us needs to believe that we are creative and avoid the belief that only special, talented people are creative. Remember:

‘A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single [person] contemplates it, bearing within [them] the image of a cathedral.’

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (1942)

And so to this first issue in 2012, our second year. We have numerous expressions of creativity in this issue that can challenge our ways of thinking and seeing things. One of the authors for example, challenged herself by researching her own practice, a huge endeavour. On a larger scale we have a guest editorial from the newly launched Person-centred Practice International Community of Practice, whose members are seeking to creatively look at patterns within this area of practice. Whilst two papers present the ways in which they used art and images to enable individuals and teams to make sense of practice, another author uses a less acknowledged creative process, ‘parking’, to enable his mind and body to unfold new insights and understandings. Collaboration is a key theme for several of the papers and again it could be argued that all demonstrate creativity in the variety of approaches that have been used to enable to views and perspectives of healthcare practitioners to be explored and shared, thereby creating the opportunity to derive meaning from the patterns of practice and to consider what the new patterns should look like.

The journal team hopes that what you engage with here enables you to stand back and look at wholeness in more creative way.


IBM Global Chief Executive Officers Study (2010) Retrieved from: (Last accessed 10th May 2012).

de Saint-ExupéryAntoine (1942) Pilote de Guerre (translated into English as Flight to Arras).

Jan Dewing (PhD, MN, BSc, RN, RNT, Dip Nurs Ed, Dip Nurs), Academic Editor, International Practice Development Journal; Professor of Person-centred Research and Practice Development, East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust and Canterbury Christchurch University, Kent, England. Visiting Professor, Person-centred Practice Research Centre University of Ulster, Northern Ireland. Visiting Professor Aged Care and Practice Development, School of Nursing Midwifery and Indigenous Health Studies, University of Wollongong NSW (in partnership with Uniting Care Ageing SE Region).

This article by Jan Dewing is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial 3.0 License.

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