Three experiments investigated the consequences of the epistemic motivation toward closure on the emergence of creative interactions in small groups. In the first study, need for closure was manipulated via time pressure. Results showed that in groups under high need for closure (i.e. under time pressure) the percentage of creative acts during group discussion was reduced. The second study replicated this result using an individual differences operationalization of the need for closure. In the third study, groups composed of individuals high (versus low) in need for closure performed less creatively, and exhibited less ideational fluidity during group interaction. Moreover, it was demonstrated that conformity pressure mediates the negative relationship between dispositional need for closure and group creativity. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.