I enjoy giving talks (thinking and improvising together) to a wide range of audiences, including architects, artists, communicators, designers, and individuals of all ages keen to maximize their mental agility.


“Creative Interplay: Using ‘detail stepping’ to boost our mental nimbleness” (2016, August).  Science Museum of Minnesota.  St. Paul, MN

Source: Jon Binks, 2017

“Innovating Minds: Making and finding in our idea landscapes” (2015, May). Minnesota Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Minneapolis, MN

“Enhancing mental agility in individuals and groups” (2014, October).  Distinguished Scholar Lecture, Minnesota Psychological Association.  St. Paul, MN.

Podcast: “The psychology of creativity” (2013, October). Composer Quest podcast interview with Charlie McCarron. Minneapolis, MN

Here’s Charlie McCarron’s description of what we talked about:

“In this episode of Composer Quest, [Wilma Koutstaal] shares words of wisdom with all of us who want to be more creative. We talk about how to to get unstuck from writer’s block, how to move between abstract and detailed thinking, and how to avoid procrastination.”


Magazine Interview with Susan Perry: “Creativity and the agile mind.” Reach (Summer, 2013). (Interview—pdf) 

“Innovating minds” (2013, August).  Invited address to the American Psychological Association on the occasion of receiving the William James Book Award for The Agile Mind.  Honolulu, HI.

Radio Interview (Access Minnesota): “Mental Agility and Creative Thinking” (August, 2013). Minneapolis, MN In this two-part radio interview we discuss:

  • what mental agility is and its relationship to creativity
  • a few of my favorite psychology experiments and why
  • how we can use our environments to be more mentally agile
  • ways to think about detail stepping in our actions, our goals, and in our brains

Interview: Part 1


Interview: Part 2


“Thinking memory: Reflections three” (November 2012). Presentation and discussion at the Weisman Art Museum, WAM Chatter—Is memory true? Minneapolis, MN. Panelists Rebecca Krinke, Wilma Koutstaal, and Mona Smith presented in pecha kucha style format and responded to the question in twenty slides shown for exactly twenty seconds each. Steve Dietz moderated the discussion. My presentation begins at 12:40.

Here’s the text of my talk with selected images:  (Thinking Memory—pdf)