Helping people solve problems together

Faculty associated with the Center for Cooperative Problem Solving are working to advance the teaching and research in problem solving, with specific attention to Adaption-Innovation (A-I) theory and the corresponding Kirton’s Adaption-Innovation Inventory (KAI).

The hallmark of A-I theory is that a measurable characteristic of an individual’s personality (problem-solving style) is connected to a problem-solving preference towards the management of change. According to A-I theory, people are either more adaptive or more innovative in how they solve problems. More specifically, A-I theory illustrates that individuals fall somewhere on a problem-solving style continuum ranging from extremely adaptive to extremely innovative. Part of the utility power of A-I theory is that problem-solving style (as measured by the KAI) has been found to be independent of culture, ethnicity, intelligence, motivation, and other measures of capacity. Problem-solving style is innate and does not change as one matures; all of which makes A-I theory useful for identifying and addressing functional challenges in which people, teams, organizations, and communities are facing problems to solve!

KAI Certification training is only being offered in the United States by Virginia Tech at this time. For more information on the value of KAI certification, and how to register for the next course, see our collaboration with Continuing and Professional Education.

The Graduate Certificate in Problem Solving for Leading Change, a 12 credit-hour program of study examining how one’s problem-solving style may influence how one solves problems, works in a team, leads change efforts, and acts as an agent of change in society. Offered online in sequence starting every fall on odd-years.

Contact Our KAI Practitioners to learn more about application of A-I theory, uses of the KAI, and opportunities to collaborate in research.

For More Information
Dr. Curt Friedel, Director
(540) 231-8177
cfriedel@vt.edu

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