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Living abroad gives expats greater creativity in problem solving, according to new research published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. In an experiment, researchers gave subjects a box of tacks, a candle, and some matches. The subjects were asked to fix the candle to the wall in such a way that, when it was lit, no wax would drip onto the floor. Sixty percent of expats could solve the problem, versus 42 percent of those who’d never lived abroad. Another experiment asked subjects to draw an alien creature. Those who hadn’t lived abroad returned fairly ordinary creatures which closely resembled Earthbound lifeforms. Those who had lived abroad — well, see for yourself. It’s not just that more creative people are predisposed to living overseas; the study’s authors isolated personality traits known to be associated with creativity, and controlled for their presence or absence in their subjects. It’s the process of adapting to a new culture that seems to drive the creativity boost. Related: Travel Tips for Introverts. [%comments]