By Maria Bregman
How They Inspire Us with Their Innovations
Creativity is the ability to generate novel and useful ideas that solve problems or create value. It is one of the most sought-after skills in the 21st century, as it drives innovation, entrepreneurship, and social change. Creativity is not limited to any domain or discipline; it can be found in science, art, business, education, and more.
In this article, we will introduce you to the top-10 most creative people of 2023-2024, who have made remarkable contributions to their fields and society with their original and impactful ideas. We will also share some examples and stories of how they use their creativity to overcome challenges, seize opportunities, and inspire others.
1. Elon Musk: The Visionary Entrepreneur
Elon Musk is the founder and CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, Neuralink, and The Boring Company. He is widely regarded as one of the most visionary and influential entrepreneurs of our time, as he aims to revolutionise transportation, energy, space exploration, and brain-computer interfaces with his innovative ventures.
Musk is known for his audacious and ambitious goals, such as making electric vehicles mainstream, colonising Mars, and merging human intelligence with artificial intelligence. He is also known for his creative problem-solving skills, as he constantly challenges the status quo and seeks to improve the existing systems and technologies.
One example of Musk’s creativity is his Starlink project, which is a constellation of thousands of satellites that provide high-speed internet access to anywhere on Earth. Musk came up with this idea after seeing the limitations and inefficiencies of the traditional internet infrastructure, such as cables, towers, and routers. He envisioned a network of satellites that would orbit the Earth at low altitudes and beam down internet signals to users via small terminals. This would enable faster, cheaper, and more reliable internet access for billions of people, especially in remote and rural areas.
Another example of Musk’s creativity is his Hyperloop concept, which is a proposed mode of transportation that uses pods that travel through tubes at near-vacuum conditions and speeds of over 1,000 km/h. Musk conceived this idea after being frustrated with the traffic congestion and pollution caused by conventional modes of transportation, such as cars, trains, and planes. He imagined a system that would use magnetic levitation and electric propulsion to move passengers and cargo between cities in minutes, while reducing energy consumption and environmental impact.
Musk’s creativity is driven by his curiosity, passion, and optimism. He is always eager to learn new things, explore new possibilities, and pursue his visions. He is also resilient and persistent, as he does not give up easily when faced with difficulties or failures. He believes that anything is possible with enough effort and innovation.
Musk’s creativity inspires us to think big, challenge ourselves, and make a positive difference in the world.
2. Beyoncé Knowles-Carter: The Iconic Artist
Beyoncé Knowles-Carter is a singer, songwriter, producer, and entrepreneur. She is one of the most successful and influential artists of all time, as she has sold over 200 million records worldwide, won 28 Grammy Awards, and received numerous accolades for her music, films, and fashion.
Beyoncé is known for her artistic versatility, as she can sing and perform in various genres, such as R&B, pop, hip hop, soul, and rock. She is also known for her creative expression, as she uses her music and visuals to convey her personal and social messages, such as empowerment, feminism, and racial justice.
One example of Beyoncé’s creativity is her album Lemonade, which was released in 2016. Lemonade is a visual album, which means that it consists of a series of music videos that form a narrative. The album explores the themes of betrayal, forgiveness, identity, and healing, as Beyoncé reflects on her personal and ancestral experiences. The album also features diverse musical influences, such as blues, country, reggae, and trap, as well as collaborations with artists, such as Kendrick Lamar, Jack White, and James Blake. The album was praised for its artistic innovation, cultural relevance, and emotional impact.
Another example of Beyoncé’s creativity is her film Black Is King, which was released in 2020. Black Is King is a musical film and visual album, which is based on the soundtrack of The Lion King: The Gift, which Beyoncé curated and produced for the 2019 remake of the Disney classic. The film reimagines the story of The Lion King from an African perspective, as it celebrates the beauty, diversity, and richness of African culture and history. The film also features stunning cinematography, costumes, choreography, and symbolism, as well as appearances by African artists, such as Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage, and Wizkid. The film was acclaimed for its artistic vision, cultural representation, and social commentary.
Beyoncé’s creativity is driven by her passion, authenticity, and purpose. She is always passionate about her art, as she puts her heart and soul into her work. She is also authentic, as she expresses her true self and values through her music and visuals. She is also purposeful, as she uses her platform and influence to inspire and empower others, especially women and people of colour.
Beyoncé’s creativity inspires us to be ourselves, express ourselves, and uplift others.
3. Yuval Noah Harari: The Insightful Historian
Yuval Noah Harari is a historian, philosopher, and author. He is best known for his books Sapiens, Homo Deus, and 21 Lessons for the 21st Century, which have sold over 35 million copies worldwide and have been translated into more than 60 languages.
Harari is known for his insightful and provocative perspectives on human history, present, and future, as he explores the origins, evolution, and challenges of our species. He is also known for his creative synthesis, as he combines insights from various disciplines, such as biology, psychology, sociology, economics, and technology, to create a comprehensive and coherent narrative of humanity.
One example of Harari’s creativity is his book Sapiens, which was published in 2014. Sapiens is a brief history of humankind, which covers the major events and developments that shaped our species, from the emergence of Homo sapiens in Africa 300,000 years ago, to the rise of agriculture, civilizations, religions, empires, science, and capitalism, to the present day. The book also examines the role of human cognition, culture, and cooperation in our success, as well as the impact of our actions on ourselves, other animals, and the environment. The book was praised for its original and engaging style, as well as its bold and thought-provoking arguments.
Another example of Harari’s creativity is his book Homo Deus, which was published in 2016. Homo Deus is a glimpse into the future of humankind, which explores the possible consequences and implications of our technological and scientific advancements, such as artificial intelligence, biotechnology, and nanotechnology, for our society, morality, and identity. The book also questions the meaning and purpose of our existence, as we face the potential of transcending our biological limitations, creating new forms of life, and becoming gods. The book was applauded for its imaginative and challenging vision, as well as its critical and ethical analysis.
Harari’s creativity is driven by his curiosity, humility, and courage. He is always curious about the world, as he seeks to understand the past, present, and future of humanity. He is also humble, as he acknowledges the limitations and uncertainties of his knowledge and views. He is also courageous, as he dares to question the conventional wisdom and assumptions of our society and culture.
Harari’s creativity inspires us to learn, think, and question.
4. Malala Yousafzai: The Brave Activist
Malala Yousafzai is a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, human rights activist, and author. She is best known for her advocacy for girls’ education, especially in her native Pakistan, where the Taliban banned girls from attending school.
Malala is known for her bravery and resilience, as she survived a gunshot to the head by a Taliban gunman in 2012, when she was only 15 years old. She is also known for her creative leadership, as she founded the Malala Fund, a global organisation that supports girls’ education and empowerment.
One example of Malala’s creativity is her book I Am Malala, which was published in 2013. I Am Malala is a memoir that tells the story of Malala’s life, from her childhood in the Swat Valley, to her attack and recovery, to her activism and recognition. The book also sheds light on the culture, history, and politics of Pakistan, as well as the challenges and opportunities for girls’ education around the world. The book was praised for its honesty, courage, and inspiration.
Another example of Malala’s creativity is her speech at the United Nations in 2013, which marked her 16th birthday and her first public appearance after her attack. Malala delivered a powerful and eloquent speech that called for universal education, peace, and equality. She also declared July 12 as Malala Day, a day to celebrate and support the rights of every child to education. The speech was applauded for its wisdom, passion, and impact.
Malala’s creativity is driven by her compassion, conviction, and hope. She is always compassionate, as she cares for the well-being and dignity of others, especially the oppressed and marginalised. She is also convinced, as she believes in the power and potential of education, especially for girls, to transform lives and societies. She is also hopeful, as she sees the possibility and promise of a better future, despite the difficulties and dangers she faces.
Malala’s creativity inspires us to be brave, compassionate, and hopeful.
5. Satoshi Nakamoto: The Mysterious Inventor
Satoshi Nakamoto is the pseudonym of the person or group who created Bitcoin, the first and most popular cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is a decentralised digital currency that operates without the need for a central authority or intermediary, such as a bank or a government.
Satoshi is known for his mystery and anonymity, as he has never revealed his true identity or whereabouts, despite the speculation and investigation by many. He is also known for his creative invention, as he designed and implemented a novel and revolutionary system that combines cryptography, computer science, and economics, to enable peer-to-peer transactions that are secure, transparent, and efficient.
One example of Satoshi’s creativity is his white paper, which was published in 2008. The white paper is a technical document that explains the concept, design, and operation of Bitcoin. The white paper also introduces the blockchain, which is a distributed ledger that records and verifies every transaction in the network. The white paper was praised for its clarity, elegance, and innovation.
Another example of Satoshi’s creativity is his code, which was released in 2009. The code is the software that runs the Bitcoin network and enables the creation and transfer of bitcoins. The code is open source, which means that anyone can access, modify, and improve it. The code is also robust, secure, and efficient, as it has been tested and refined by thousands of developers and users over the years.
Satoshi’s creativity is driven by his vision, ingenuity, and generosity. He is always visionary, as he foresaw the potential and benefits of a decentralised and digital currency, especially in the face of the global financial crisis and the limitations and failures of the traditional monetary system. He is also ingenious, as he solved the technical and economic challenges of creating and maintaining such a system, such as the double-spending problem, the incentive mechanism, and the consensus algorithm. He is also generous, as he gave away his invention to the world, without seeking any fame or fortune.
Satoshi’s creativity inspires us to be visionary, ingenious, and generous.
6. Emma Watson: The Empowered Actress
Emma Watson is an actress, activist, and model. She is best known for her role as Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter film series, which made her a global star and a role model for millions of young girls.
Emma is known for her empowered and versatile acting, as she can portray various characters, such as Belle in Beauty and the Beast, Meg March in Little Women, and Sam in The Perks of Being a Wallflower. She is also known for her creative advocacy, as she uses her fame and influence to promote gender equality, education, and sustainability.
One example of Emma’s creativity is her speech at the United Nations in 2014, which launched the HeForShe campaign, a global movement that invites men and boys to join the fight for gender equality. Emma delivered a passionate and eloquent speech that challenged the stereotypes and prejudices that affect both women and men, and called for solidarity and action to achieve a more just and inclusive world. The speech was praised for its courage, intelligence, and inspiration.
Another example of Emma’s creativity is her book club, which she started in 2016. The book club, called Our Shared Shelf, is an online platform that encourages people to read and discuss books that explore various topics, such as feminism, race, sexuality, and culture. Emma also interviews the authors of the books and shares her insights and opinions with her followers. The book club was applauded for its creativity, diversity, and engagement.
Emma’s creativity is driven by her passion, curiosity, and responsibility. She is always passionate about her acting, as she puts her heart and soul into her roles. She is also curious, as she loves to read, learn, and explore new ideas and perspectives. She is also responsible, as she feels a duty to use her voice and platform to make a positive difference in the world.
Emma’s creativity inspires us to be passionate, curious, and responsible.
7. Mark Zuckerberg: The Social Innovator
Mark Zuckerberg is the founder and CEO of Facebook, the largest and most popular social media platform in the world. Facebook connects over 3 billion people across the globe, enabling them to share, communicate, and collaborate with each other.
Mark is known for his social innovation, as he created and developed a platform that changed the way people interact and relate to each other online. He is also known for his creative vision, as he constantly seeks to improve and expand his platform and services, such as Instagram, WhatsApp, Messenger, and Oculus.
One example of Mark’s creativity is his announcement of the metaverse in 2021, which is a virtual reality environment that allows users to interact with each other and create their own experiences. Mark envisioned a metaverse that would be the next evolution of the internet, as it would enable more immersive, expressive, and inclusive social interactions. Mark also invested in the technology and infrastructure that would make the metaverse possible, such as virtual reality headsets, artificial intelligence, and blockchain.
Another example of Mark’s creativity is his initiative of internet.org in 2013, which is a global partnership that aims to provide affordable and accessible internet access to everyone, especially in developing countries. Mark recognised the potential and benefits of the internet for social and economic development, as well as the challenges and barriers that prevent many people from accessing it. Mark also collaborated with various partners, such as mobile operators, governments, and NGOs, to offer solutions and services that would connect the unconnected.
Mark’s creativity is driven by his mission, ambition, and optimism. He is always mission-oriented, as he believes in the power and purpose of connecting the world. He is also ambitious, as he sets high and bold goals for himself and his company. He is also optimistic, as he sees the opportunities and possibilities that the internet and technology can offer for humanity.
Mark’s creativity inspires us to be innovative, visionary, and optimistic.
8. Marie Kondo: The Joyful Organiser
Marie Kondo is an organising consultant, author, and media personality. She is best known for her method of tidying up, which is based on the principle of keeping only the items that spark joy and discarding the rest.
Marie is known for her joyful and effective organising, as she helps people declutter their homes and lives, and create more space, harmony, and happiness. She is also known for her creative influence, as she has inspired millions of people around the world to follow her method and philosophy, through her books, TV shows, and online platforms.
One example of Marie’s creativity is her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, which was published in 2011. The book is a guide that explains the steps and benefits of the KonMari method, which is a simple and systematic way of organising one’s belongings by category, such as clothes, books, papers, and sentimental items. The book also teaches how to fold, store, and display the items that spark joy, and how to let go of the items that do not, with gratitude and respect. The book was praised for its simplicity, practicality, and inspiration.
Another example of Marie’s creativity is her Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, which was released in 2019. The series is a reality show that follows Marie as she visits different households and helps them tidy up their spaces and lives, according to their needs and preferences. The series also showcases the positive effects of tidying up, such as reducing stress, improving relationships, and enhancing well-being. The series was applauded for its entertainment, diversity, and transformation.
Marie’s creativity is driven by her passion, intuition, and mission. She is always passionate about organising, as she has been fascinated by it since she was a child. She is also intuitive, as she trusts her feelings and instincts when it comes to choosing and arranging the items that spark joy. She is also mission-oriented, as she believes that tidying up is a way of expressing one’s true self and achieving one’s ideal lifestyle.
Marie’s creativity inspires us to be joyful, intuitive, and mission-oriented.
9. Lin-Manuel Miranda: The Musical Genius
Lin-Manuel Miranda is a composer, lyricist, actor, and producer. He is best known for his musicals Hamilton and In the Heights, which have won multiple awards and accolades, such as the Pulitzer Prize, the Tony Award, and the Grammy Award.
Lin-Manuel is known for his musical genius, as he can create and perform songs that blend various genres, such as hip hop, rap, jazz, and salsa. He is also known for his creative storytelling, as he uses his music and lyrics to tell the stories of diverse and historical figures, such as Alexander Hamilton, George Washington, and Usnavi de la Vega.
One example of Lin-Manuel’s creativity is his musical Hamilton, which was premiered in 2015. Hamilton is a musical biography of Alexander Hamilton, one of the founding fathers of the United States, who was also an immigrant, a soldier, a lawyer, and a politician. The musical features a cast of actors of colour, who play the roles of the white historical characters, and a score that incorporates hip hop, rap, R&B, and Broadway styles. The musical also explores the themes of ambition, revolution, love, and legacy, as it depicts the life and death of Hamilton and his contemporaries. The musical was praised for its originality, relevance, and brilliance.
Another example of Lin-Manuel’s creativity is his musical In the Heights, which was premiered in 2008. In the Heights is a musical that portrays the lives and dreams of the residents of Washington Heights, a predominantly Latino neighbourhood in New York City. The musical features a score that mixes salsa, merengue, reggaeton, and pop music, and a story that celebrates the culture, identity, and community of the characters. The musical also addresses the issues of gentrification, immigration, and discrimination, as it shows the challenges and opportunities that the characters face. The musical was acclaimed for its authenticity, diversity, and joy.
Lin-Manuel’s creativity is driven by his love, talent, and vision. He is always in love with music, as he grew up listening to and making music of various genres and languages. He is also talented, as he has a natural gift and skill for composing and performing music. He is also visionary, as he has a clear and bold vision of what he wants to create and communicate with his music.
Lin-Manuel’s creativity inspires us to be in love, talented, and visionary.
10. Jane Goodall: The Compassionate Scientist
Jane Goodall is a primatologist, ethologist, and activist. She is best known for her groundbreaking research on the behaviour and intelligence of chimpanzees, which she conducted for over 60 years in Tanzania.
Jane is known for her compassionate and pioneering science, as she revolutionised the field of primatology and challenged the conventional views of human and animal relationships. She is also known for her creative activism, as she founded the Jane Goodall Institute, a global organisation that promotes the conservation and welfare of chimpanzees and other animals, as well as the empowerment and education of local communities.
One example of Jane’s creativity is her discovery of chimpanzee tool use, which she made in 1960. Jane observed that chimpanzees in Gombe National Park would strip the leaves off twigs and use them to fish for termites in their mounds. This was the first evidence that animals other than humans could make and use tools, which was a major breakthrough in the understanding of animal intelligence and evolution. Jane also named and recognised the individual personalities and emotions of the chimpanzees, which was a novel and controversial approach at the time.
Another example of Jane’s creativity is her Roots & Shoots programme, which she launched in 1991. Roots & Shoots is a youth-led movement that empowers young people to take action for the environment, animals, and people. The programme encourages young people to identify and address the problems they care about in their communities, and to develop their skills and values as compassionate leaders and changemakers. The programme has grown to over 150 countries and has reached millions of young people.
Jane’s creativity is driven by her curiosity, empathy, and purpose. She is always curious about the world, as she loves to observe, learn, and discover new things. She is also empathetic, as she cares for and respects the lives and feelings of others, especially the animals. She is also purposeful, as she dedicates her life and work to making the world a better place for all living beings.
Jane’s creativity inspires us to be curious, empathetic, and purposeful.