Innovative Potential of Personality: Systemic Anthropological Context

By Klochko, Vitaliy Y.; Galazhinskiy, Eduard, V | Psychology in Russia, January 1, 2009 | Go to article overview

Innovative Potential of Personality: Systemic Anthropological Context


Klochko, Vitaliy Y., Galazhinskiy, Eduard, V, Psychology in Russia


The concept of "innovative personality" was introduced by Everett Hagen (1963), who regarded it as a prerequisite for economic growth, development of entrepreneurship and capital accumulation. The assumption behind this is that there are different "personality syndromes", polarity of which represents the typical features characteristic of the traditional and modern societies. The first type of society has an authoritarian personality, the second one - a different in all the aspects - an innovative personality. With the reference to the theorists of post-industrial information society (Reich, 1992; Drucker, 1993; Castells, 2000), it can be stated that the vehicle of the modern economy are the people, and, first of all, those who have the potential to transform their opportunities into reality, especially in the way of searching, identifying and using information. New economy requires a new kind of worker; it puts to the forefront creative potential of a person, their professionalism and erudition, ability to "be redundant", to exceed the roles and functions, where they can be substituted and are just mortal bearers of "an immortal social beginning". The shift from technocratic to anthropocentric organization of labour and production is occurring.

In any case, modernity, viewed as an epoch of innovative social development, makes special demands of a person. To meet these requirements it is necessary to have certain personality orientations, qualities and values, which could empower a person to participate effectively in innovative processes. The innovative behaviour has other than "a tensed need" source of activity in itself. Having recognized this other source of a person's activity, many theories of classical and non-classical orientation started their development.

There have been singled out quite a lot of different empirical indicators and personality traits, connected with the processes of origin of an incentive to the innovative behaviour. These criteria have been identified in the process of studying personalities of innovators - people who show inclination to entrepreneurship or have achieved much success in it. In other words, researcher's attention was focused on (and is still being focused on) the problem of personality causation of the motivational processes ensuring a personal involvement into an entrepreneurial activity. The major question asked was related to the definition of personality traits which must be characteristic of people who are able to fulfill an entrepreneurial function, taken into consideration that an entrepreneur is an innovator by nature, i.e. a person with a certain psychological profile.

It can be supposed that the set of all these indicators conditions the personality resource which defines an innovative potential of a person. However, several issues remain unresolved:

* all these indicators, being empirical, do not constitute a system: their inclusion in the innovative potential of a person is not theoretically grounded, they do "intersect", duplicating each other in a way, but there is a feeling though that they are not linear and represent details of a multi-level ensemble;

* even accepting the fact that these indicators characterize completely the innovative potential of a person, it still remains problematic how and why are potential abilities of a person actualized under one conditions, and are not under the other ones;

* classically and non-classically oriented psychological thought could not overcome the dichotomy of the internal and external factors causing the incentive to entrepreneurial activity "here and now" overcoming this dichotomy is possible within the principle of system determinism (as one of the methodological means of the post non-classical science);

* the so-called "dialectical method" implies considering all the facts and processes "in the general interrelation, interdependence and development", that makes it possible to define three interrelated principles: system, determinism and developmental principles; namely these principles had been identified a while ago as priorities in psychology, but only now they are being connected not in a declarative way, not by means of "a methodological sticking together" in some kind of their abstract unity, but by means of identifying a self-developing system (a person). …

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