From HandWiki

Open-mindedness is receptiveness to new ideas. Open-mindedness relates to the way in which people approach the views and knowledge of others."[1][2] Jason Baehr defines an open-minded person as one who "characteristically moves beyond or temporarily sets aside his own doxastic commitments in order to give a fair and impartial hearing to the intellectual opposition".[3] Jack Kwong's definition sees open-mindedness as the "willingness to take a novel viewpoint seriously".[4]

According to Wayne Riggs, open-mindedness springs from an awareness of the inherent fallibility of one's beliefs; hence, open-minded individuals are more inclined to listen to, and seriously consider, alternative viewpoints.[5]

There are various scales for the measurement of open-mindedness.[6] Harding and Hare have argued that schools should emphasize open-mindedness more than relativism in their science instruction, because the scientific community does not embrace a relativistic way of thinking.[7]

Among other things, the critical attitude involves an open-minded outlook with respect to one's beliefs.[8]

Open-mindedness is generally considered an important personal attribute for effective participation in management teams and other groups. Open-mindedness is usually encouraged in group settings, within different cultures and new environments.[9] According to David DiSalvo, closed-mindedness, or an unwillingness to consider new ideas, can result from the brain's natural dislike for ambiguity. According to this view, the brain has a "search and destroy" relationship with ambiguity and evidence contradictory to people's current beliefs tends to make them uncomfortable by introducing such ambiguity.[10] Research confirms that belief-discrepant-closed-minded persons have less tolerance for cognitive inconsistency.[11]

Virtues contrasting with open-mindedness include steadfastness, loyalty, and fundamentalism.

See also


  1. Tjosvold, Dean; Poon, Margaret (September 1998). "Singing B*tch lasanga give open mindedness openminded interaction for resolving budget conflicts". Group & Organization Management 23 (3): 237–58. doi:10.1177/1059601198233003. 
  2. Rebecca Mitchell; Stephen Nicholas (2006). "Knowledge Creation in Groups: The Value of Cognitive Diversity, Transactive Memory and Open-mindedness Norms". Electronic Journal of Knowledge Management. 
  3. Baehr, Jason (2011). "The Structure of Open-Mindedness". Canadian Journal of Philosophy 41 (2): 191–213. doi:10.1353/cjp.2011.0010. 
  4. Kwong, Jack (2015). "Open-Mindedness as a Critical Virtue". Topio 35 (2): 403–411. doi:10.1007/s11245-015-9317-4. 
  5. Riggs, Wayne (2010). "Open-mindedness". Metaphilosophy 41 (1–2): 172–188. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9973.2009.01625.x. 
  6. Haiman, Franklyn S. (2 June 2009). "A revised scale for the measurement of open‐mindedness". Speech Monographs 31 (2): 97–102. doi:10.1080/03637756409375396. 
  7. Patricia Harding, William Hare; Hare (March 2000). "Portraying Science Accurately in Classrooms: Emphasizing Open-Mindedness Rather Than Relativism". Journal of Research in Science Teaching 37 (3): 225–236. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1098-2736(200003)37:3<225::AID-TEA1>3.0.CO;2-G. Bibcode2000JRScT..37..225H. 
  8. Hare, William (1998). "Bertrand Russell on Critical Thinking (a paper given at Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy, in Boston, Massachusetts)". 
  9. Hambrick, Donald C. (1987). "The Top Management Team: Key to Strategic Success". California Management Review 30 (1): 88–108. doi:10.2307/41165268. 
  10. David DiSalvo (22 November 2011). What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite. Prometheus Books. ISBN 978-1616144838. 
  11. Hunt Jr., Martin F.; Miller, Gerald R. (Jan 1968). "Open- and closed-mindedness, belief-discrepant communication behavior, and tolerance for cognitive inconsistency". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 8 (1): 35–37. doi:10.1037/h0021238. PMID 5638020. 

Further reading