Math Camp received a shout out (with a photo!) in the Wall Street Journal - July 5. 


The work on the number of undocumented immigrants has received a good deal of press coverage. Professor Feinstein was on the Fox & Friends morning news show on Tuesday, September 25. He also had an interview with NPR Southern California Monday, September 24. Many other press organizations have covered the study, including a reference on Sunday, October 14 in the New York Times Magazine.


Professor Feinstein has developed a model of guiding conceptions and creativity.  It brings together his intuitive and conceptual approach with a formal model of the elements in a field.  Stay tuned for more!


Professor Feinstein is working on a new creativity manuscript focusing on the key "intermediate" stepping stones of creative journeys.  Steps that bridge from large ideals, principles, questions, challenges, and themes, to define an ``intermediate''  creative focus.  This kind of focus is central in guiding people in their exploration and sparking ideas and projects.  This approach can help individuals better navigate their creative development.  It also helps us appreciate the "subterranean links" of culture that work through broader creative thinking and are often invisible in conventional accounts that focus on the final creative step and view creativity as a short-term phenomenon.


 Watch Professor Feinstein's talk "Creativity & Complexity" at IMCIC in March 2015 here: .  He discusses individual creative development, and  modeling the creative development of fields. 


Read Professor Feinstein's blog on Creative Development for the Tory Burch Foundation:




Jonathan Feinstein studies creativity, specifically creative development. While it is common to focus on the moment of inspiration as the essence of creativity, he takes a more encompassing and organic approach, studying how creativity and innovation are generated through an unfolding process of development. His work focuses on understanding how an individual or team forms a guiding creative conception which guides them forward exploring, gathering elements, and pursuing projects, ultimately generating creative insights and connections.

 Professor Feinstein is the author of The Nature of Creative Development which describes the process of creative development with many examples drawn from a wide range of fields. His work extends from individual creativity to the study of the development of fields, in his paper "The Creative Development of Fields" published in 2017 in the Journal of the Knowledge Economy. His work focuses on linking creativity with knowledge representation.   He is developing models of how individuals form novel guiding conceptions that in turn enable them to spot new opportunities and creative connections.  Thus creativity emerges through a two-step process.

Professor Feinstein is committed to nurturing true creative development in educational and professional settings.  His class Creativity & Innovation is a longstanding favorite at Yale.  He lectures regularly on how to foster creative development in the classroom, focusing on unleashing creative development through exercises and sharing.  

Another aspect of his approach is his view that many creative links go unrecognized and unappreciated:  In the winding path of a person's creative development there are many influences that are not evident in that person's ultimate creative work but were essential to its creation.

Beyond his work on creativity, Professor Feinstein is an expert in tax compliance, detection, and models of auditing and compliance. His contributions in this area include the econometric model detection controlled estimation, which has had considerable practical application, game theory models of compliance and auditing, and a widely cited review of the tax compliance field. He is also the author of a well known review of the relationship between socioeconomic status and health.

 Image by Ariel Feinstein

Image by Ariel Feinstein

Recent Papers

Have just published with Mohammad Fazel Zarandi and Edward Kaplan: The number of undocumented immigrants in the United States: Estimates based on demographic modeling with data from 1990 to 2016, PLoS ONE.

A new version of Graduate Economics Teaching of Core Microeconomics: Diversity, Knowledge Clusters, and Job Placement is available now!  Click the link.


 The Creative Development of Fields: Learning, Creativity, Paths, Implications  is published in the Journal of the Knowledge Economy, 2017.   In the paper I construct a model of the creative development of a field through the series of creative contributions individuals make. It links economics with the field of knowledge representation.