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Brainstorming is an organized approach for producing creative ideas by letting the mind think without interruption. Brainstorming can be done either individually or in a group; in group brainstorming sessions, the participants are encouranged, and often expected, to share their ideas with one another as soon as they are generated. The key to brainstorming is not to interrupt the thought process. As ideas come to the mind, they are captured and stimulate the development of better ideas.

It is a means of enhancing divergent production, aiming to facilitate problem solving through the maxim quantity breads quality. The greater the number of ideas generated, the greater the chance of producing a radical and effective solution.

An essential element of brainstorming is putting criticism 'on hold'. Instead of immediately stating what might be wrong with an idea, the participants focus on extending or adding to it, reserving criticism for a later 'critical stage' of the process.

Some people advocate the use of the term thought shower instead of "brainstorming", which could be viewed by some as discriminatory, but this proposal has not received popular support.

See also

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