Inspired to create: Awe enhances openness to learning and the desire for experiential creation

Melanie Rudd, Christian Hildebrand, Kathleen D Vohs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Automated fabrication, home services, and premade goods pervade the modern consumer landscape. Against this backdrop, this research explores how the emotion of awe might motivate a consumer to partake instead in experiential creation (i.e., activities in which they actively produce an outcome) by enhancing their willingness to learn. Across eight experiments, experiencing awe (vs. happiness, excitement, pride, amusement, or neutrality) increases people’s likelihood of choosing an experiential creation gift (vs. one not involving experiential creation), willingness to pay for experiential creation products (vs. comparable ready-made products), likelihood of creating a bespoke snack (vs. taking a premade one), preference for experiential creation solutions (vs. solutions without experiential creation), likelihood of purchasing a product when it is framed as high (vs. low) in experiential creation, preference for high (vs. low) experiential creation meals, and likelihood of creating a knickknack (vs. taking a premade one). This greater desire for experiential creation is mediated by openness to learning and moderated by the need for closure. These findings, relevant for firms encouraging creation-oriented products and behaviors, offer fresh insights for engaging consumers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)766-781
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Marketing Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


  • Awe
  • Emotions
  • Experiential creation
  • Learning


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