The effect of income inequality on individual ideation-based creativity via self-regulation
The purpose of this research is to examine the impact of income inequality on individual creativity. Specifically, it is hypothesized that an individual’s creative performance (via a remote associatives test) is affected negatively in a high income inequality condition. Theoretical research suggests that the mechanism that enables this is self-regulation. As such self-regulation is measured as a mediator in this relationship. Two online-panel experiments were designed and conducted to test these relationships. The results did not show significant results for the mediation relationship. Self-regulation does have a positive relationship with creative performance, and income inequality shows a negative relationship with creativity in some conditions, however there is no relationship between income inequality and self-regulation. This research develops the theoretical background for the relationship between income inequality, self-regulation, and creativity. It also provides some lessons-learned from an experimental mediation design with an independent variable that has multiple categorical variables.