Intellectual Property, Creativity and Madness

Creativity forms the foundation of intellectual property and intellectual property law. The latter has no existence in the absence of the former. We, Intellectual Property (IP)/Patent attorneys, earn our bread and butter from creators and inventors. One of the joys of being an intellectual property attorney is the opportunity to work with geniuses. While the opportunity leaves one happy and contented on most days, IP attorneys once in a while come across personalities, very difficult to handle.

Many a time, especially when I have a bad day, I have wondered if nature wantonly places weaknesses in highly creative minds. A recent study carried out by King’s College, London, indicates that schizophrenia and bipolar disorder share genetic roots with creativity. From a study of about eighty-six thousand creative individuals belonging to the national artistic societies of actors, dancers, musicians, visual artists and writers, it was discovered that the risk for psychological disorders was much higher in creative individuals when compared to others. For the purpose, a creative person was considered to be someone who takes novel approaches requiring cognitive processes that are different from prevailing modes of thought or expression. It is posited that: given certain biological and environmental circumstances, a creative person has a higher chance of getting a psychological disorder when compared to others. Earlier studies have also shown that mad or demented individuals manifest higher creativity and creative individuals have higher chances of going mad.

Today, one of the primary factors in determining an IP/Patent attorney’s performance is her/his ability to manage creators/inventors. Would the latest study by King’s College change that? Wait  a minute, the study does not say that all creators have the said psychological disorders or are mad, it simply points out a co-relation between the two. Increased brain activity may lead to increased brain dysfunction. No conclusions can be drawn as carried  out by some news articles.

You IP attorneys are safe when dealing with creators/inventors.

Sources- here,and here

Image source/Attribution- here, Creative Common License CC BY 2.0