Edward De Bono (1933)
He is a Maltese psychologist and physician. He writes prolifically about lateral
thinking - a concept he pioneered.
De Bono is also a consultant, working with such companies as Coca-Cola and
He studied at St Edward's College and subsequently gained a medical degree from
the Royal University of Malta. Studying at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, he gained
an honours degree in psychology and physiology and a D.Phil in medicine. He went
on to complete a PhD at Cambridge, and to faculty appointments at Oxford,
London, Cambridge and Harvard.
In 1969 De Bono founded the Cognitive Research Trust (CoRT) which continues to
produce and promote material based on his ideas. In 1979 he co-founded the
School of Thinking with Michael Hewitt-Gleeson.
He has written 75 books with translations into 37 languages. He has spent the
last 30 years teaching thinking, including working with governments,
corporations, organisations and individuals, speaking publicly or privately on
In 1995, he created the futuristic documentary film, 2040: Possibilities by
Edward de Bono, a lecture designed to prepare an audience of viewers released
from a cryogenic freeze for contemporary (2040) society.
De Bono has detailed a range of 'deliberate thinking methods' - applications
emphasizing thinking as a deliberate act rather than a reactive one. His writing
style is simple and clear, though often criticised for being dry and repetitive.
Avoiding academic terminology, he has advanced applied psychology by making
theories about creativity and perception into usable tools.
De Bono's work has become particularly popular in the sphere of business -
perhaps because of the perceived need to restructure corporations, to allow more
flexible working practices and to innovate in products and services. The methods
have migrated into corporate training courses designed to help employees and
executives 'think out of the box' / 'think outside the box'.