Americans prize creativity and innovation.

The Scientific American website took a look at why, asking various experts to address what drives the creative spark through the United States. Here’s what some of them said:

John KaoJohn Kao, CEO, Edgemakers

“What are key elements of American culture that make up the ‘secret sauce’ of innovation? For a start, forgiveness of failure, tolerance of risk, and an appetite for apparently off-the-wall ideas. In Silicon Valley, the saying goes that if you haven’t failed at least once or twice, you’re not trying hard enough.”

Linda weissLinda Weiss, professor emeritus, University of Sydney

“One of the most striking aspects of America’s innovation culture is the belief that nothing lies beyond human power to achieve, that science and technology can solve most problems, and that change invariably leads to better outcomes.”

Shamim MominShamim M. Momin, director, Los Angeles Nomadic Division

“America is a nation that celebrates its founding on individual freedom and struggle against oppressive systems of belief. It makes sense that, in order to provide each person the opportunity to pull himself or herself up by the bootstraps and succeed on one’s own merits, innovation—literally ‘a new method, idea, or product’—would be the avenue to that success.”

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