Edward de Bono: Biography highlights

A thinker with the ability to inspire and motivate others to achieve their potential, Edward de Bono coined the term ‘lateral thinking’ and has written over 50 books which have been translated into more than 30 languages.

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Full biography of Edward de Bono

His innovation in creative and conceptual thinking have seen him become a foremost expert in the direct teaching of thinking skills.

  • Expert in conceptual and creative thinking
  • Creator of the term ‘Lateral Thinking’
  • Best selling author of Six Thinking Hats
  • Dr Edward de Bono’s thinking methods are taught in schools and utilised by global organisations.

Inspirational and approachable, Dr de Bono is able to apply his ground-breaking thinking techniques to just about any circumstance and to teach people of all ages.

The ability to think creatively is essential to individuals and to teams. People of all ages can benefit from a solid education in how best to harness their thinking ability, and for decades Edward has been the one to teach them. His books and techniques are widely used in businesses of all kinds and are considered essential reading in schools throughout the world (so much so in Venezuela that it is a legal requirement for school children to devote an hour to his programmes).

Dr de Bono has worked with numerous universities, including Harvard, Cambridge, and Oxford. He has worked with numerous high profile companies, introducing his most suitable methods to each with resounding success. His clients have included IBM, Siemens, Microsoft, British Airways, Ericsson and Du Pont.

Currently a sought after speaker and international creative-thinking guru, Dr de Bono first rose to prominence in the 1960s, with the publication of his book The Use of Lateral Thinking. Teaching people how to avoid standard, linear logical thinking and to utilise their creativity, the work was met with enthusiasm by critics and individuals alike. Soon, lateral thinking was being encouraged in schools and the workplace and the term had earned its place in the Oxford English Dictionary. Since the success of The Use of Lateral Thinking, de Bono has written over 50 others, many of which, (such as Six Thinking Hats and Six Action Shoes) have been equally popular and ground-breaking.

Dr de Bono studied medicine at the University of Malta before gaining a Rhodes Scholarship to attend Oxford, where he studied psychology and physiology, eventually gaining a Ph.D. He has also achieved a Ph.D. from Cambridge University.

Positions and Honours

  • Listed in Thinkers 50 (2007)
  • National Order of Merit Malta (1995)
  • Pioneer Prize for Thinking – International Conference on Thinking, M.I.T. (1994)
  • Capire Prize for outstanding achievement (1992)
  • 40% of surveyed European Creativity Association members considered de Bono the greatest influence in the field of creativity
  • Opened the US Defense Universitys first symposium of creativity
  • Chair 1990 meeting of Nobel laureates
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Watch Edward in action

1/4 videos
Edward de Bono on creative thinking in business part (1 of 2)
Edward de Bono on creative thinking in business part (1 of 2)
Edward de Bono on creative thinking in business part (2 of 2)
Edward de Bono on creative thinking in business part (2 of 2)
Edward de Bono on creative thinking
Edward de Bono on creative thinking
Edward de Bono 'How to have a beautiful mind' at Mind & Its Potential 2011
Edward de Bono 'How to have a beautiful mind' at Mind & Its Potential 2011
Apple Computer Inc.

I definitely know of Dr de Bono and am an admirer of his work. We live in an information economy, where we have to live by what comes out of our minds.'

John Sculley
General Foods Corporation

'De Bono teaches us to challenge such assumptions and develop new creative solutions to problems.'

Philip L Smith
Young & Rubican

'The complexity and pace of contemporary life being what they are, de Bono's course should be an essential curriculum for the human race.'

Alex Kroll

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