His claims to have pioneered a new approach to thinking, or even a new field of study, are accepted by many, and he has many followers and imitators.
Born in Malta, he was educated at St Edward's College, Malta, and subsequently gained a medical degree from the Royal University of Malta. Studying at Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, he gained an honours degree in psychology and physiology and a D.Phil in medicine. He went on to complete a PhD at Cambridge, and to faculty appointments at Oxford, London, Cambridge and Harvard. He is married with two sons.
In 1969 DeBono founded the Cognitive Research Trust (CoRT) which continues to produce and promote material based on his ideas.
But a man who having written "62 books with translations into 37 languages" is nevertheless not as widely known for the sheer breadth and quality of his work. He has spent the last 30 years teaching thinking, which has led to numerous invitations by governments, corporations, organisations and individuals to speak either publicly or privately on matters of national and international interest.
No other writer has attempted to detail such a range of deliberate methods and applications for thinking, and more specifically creative thinking. Edward DeBono's writing style is both clear and coherent and has made many areas of psychology and philosophy unusually approachable to the layman.
DeBono's work has been particularly popular in the world of business, because his methods promise bottled creativity for overly bureaucratic organisations. Many the world's top 100 companies have used many of the methods explained by DeBono, and will either have been played out during sessions designed to explore or simply think before action. DeBono's methods have been particularly useful in the fields of advertising and product creation in corporate organisations, and so a number of products and services in your home and life have been affected at one stage by actual deliberate deployment of DeBono methods.
DeBono has a network of trainers who administer officially trained DeBono thinking methods, but many other trainers will use them or parts of them even when not specifically trained.
One criticism of DeBono\'s work is that he has often only formalised, named and popularised techniques that are already in use. This is would not be an issue, except for the fact his literature, for instance, talks of him 'creating' lateral thinking, when of course it is a natural form of creativity that he described and suggested formal approaches to make it happen on cue. DeBono creates the applications, not the method.
Books by DeBono include:
He is also the author of numerous articles in refereed and other journals, including The Lancet and Clinical Science.
Books by DeBono include: