The results weren’t even close. Whereas the brainstorming groups slightly outperformed the groups given no instructions, people in the “debate” condition were far more creative, generating on average nearly 25 per cent more ideas. But that’s not all: after the groups had been disbanded, each of the subjects was asked if they had any more ideas, triggered by the earlier conversation. Whereas people in the minimal and brainstorming conditions produced, on average, two ideas, those in the debate condition produced more than seven. It turns out we’re tougher than we thought. The imagination is not meek – it doesn’t wilt in the face of conflict. Instead, it is drawn out, pulled from its usual hiding place.