Resource Handbook

The Biomimicry Resource Handbook: A Seed Bank of Best Practices contains over 250 pages of our most current biomimicry thinking, methodology, and tools for naturalizing biomimicry into the culture. Because of the richness and depth of our experiences with Biomimicry, this book contains verbal knowledge never before captured on paper and organizes it into a cogent, seamless presentation that helps answer the question, “Okay, so how do you actually do biomimicry?”

At Biomimicry 3.8, we believe there is no better design partner than nature. But biomimicry is more than just looking at the shape of a flower or dragonfly and becoming newly inspired; it’s a methodology that’s being used by some of the biggest companies and innovative universities in the world. While reading this text you’ll be immersed into the world of Biomimicry the “verb”, you’ll gain a competitive edge, and a fresh perspective on how the world around us can, does, and should work. After reading the text, you’ll be well on your way to thinking in systems, designing in context, identifying patterns, and most importantly seeing the millions of organisms around us…differently.

The text is directly applicable to designers, biologists, engineers, entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs, but has also proven valuable to students, educators, and a wide variety of other disciplines.

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Handbook Contents


Life’s Principles
This section goes deep into our most comprehensive tool. It’s found near the beginning of the handbook because it’s the most important and influential component of biomimicry.

Practice of Biomimicry
Here you will find an in-depth exploration of the verb of biomimicry. It includes our Essential Elements of Biomimicry, which describe the three complementary foundations: ethos, (re)connect, and emulate. If you are looking for something resembling a methodology, look here.

Spreading the Meme
We’ve included a whole section on sharing biomimicry with others because biomimicry is best practiced in community. With sub-sections on communication and networking, you’ll find plenty of practical advice on what you can do and how to do it, including tips from our best practitioners.

Case Studies
This section recognizes the importance of examples when both learning about and teaching biomimicry. It shares how to build your own collection as well as a few featured examples.

Giving Thanks
Our next to last section could very well be first—here we acknowledge Life itself, as well as all who have made this work possible, as well as recommended resources. We find it appropriate that this collection is found here, as without this community, biomimicry would be nothing more than a fantastic idea in someone’s head.

Resource Cache
For quick access, we’ve collected a variety of references in this section, including the geological timeline, a reference table relating biomimicry to other “bio-” terms, and a glossary of terms frequently used in biomimicry. We’ve also included our Biomimicry DesignLens document here, encapsulating the graphical material and descriptions from the Resource Handbook that we are sharing under a creative commons license.


“I just got my Resource Handbook and am so proud of all of you, and all of the work it took, and how beautiful, and thorough, and professional it is. I will consume every word, and then read it again, and again…” ~ Lisa Schmidtke, Certified Biomimicry Professional (2008)