"The best ideas might not be ours."
A new film produced by Leonardo DiCaprio's Tree Media features a deeper look at biomimicry, as narrated by Biomimicry 3.8's Co-founder Janine Benyus.
The film, which examines examples of biomimicry-based ideas from nature being created throughout the world, made its debut at the Biomimicry Institute's Biomimicry Education Summit in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 4.
"Biomimicry" examines the heart of the idea that humans might not—after all—have the best answers to questions about how to build sustainable systems that allow life to thrive on planet earth.
Instead, Benyus argues, let's look to nature. Watch here: "Biomimicry" by Tree Media.
Tree Media is a production company that works to tell stories to move positive action on issues like climate change and other environmental issues.
According to its website, Tree Media is "operating in a time in which human civilization is being confronted with significant challenges - the life-support systems of the planet are deteriorating, resources are becoming scarce and we are undergoing a dramatic shift in the fundamentals of our economic system around the world."
Collaboration to enhance Institute’s Living Product Challenge through biomimicry-based solutions
Biomimicry 3.8 and the International Living Future Institute announced this week a strategic partnership to progress a common vision of using nature’s genius to create a truly regenerative world.
The partnership will lay the foundation for accessible, direct application of cutting-edge sustainability practices already being guided by ILFI’s innovative certification program, the Living Product Challenge.
“At Living Future, we see nature as the most effective tool in our kit. Engaging and incorporating biomimicry allows us to rely on nature-based solutions to fuse process with practice,” said James Connelly, Living Product Challenge director.
Biomimicry 3.8, a Certified B Corporation committed to using the power of business to solve social and environmental problems, helps innovative leaders solve human problems with the brilliance of nature’s design.
ILFI leads and supports the transformation toward communities that are socially just, culturally rich, and ecologically restorative.
B3.8 Managing Director Nicole Hagerman Miller sees the partnership as a natural fit.
“Through their programs, the Institute has developed important pathways for industry leaders to create a foundation for a sustainable future. B3.8 can build on those exciting concepts, using our expertise of applying biological intelligence to product design challenges,” Miller said.
Initially, the partnership will focus on incorporating biomimicry into the Materials Petal and Place Petal of the Living Products Challenge. Each petal represents a performance category.
For example, the intent of the Materials Petal is to help create a materials economy that is non-toxic, ecologically regenerative, transparent, and socially equitable. Incorporating biomimicry into the process could help companies eliminate “Red List” toxins in materials or chemicals they use.
“In some cases, the solutions might not even be material-based, but instead completely eliminate the need for that material in the first place,” Miller said.
Additional information and programs related to the partnership between B3.8 and ILFI will be released in coming months.
For more information, contact Jenna Cederberg at email@example.com or 406-543-4108, ext. 206. Learn more about Biomimicry 3.8 at Biomimicry.net. Learn more about the International Living Future Institute at Living-future.org.
Great minds that innovate alike will gather in Bozeman, Montana, this week to talk about the future of humanity and biodiversity, and artificial intelligence.
The group, including Biomimicry 3.8 Co-founder Janine Benyus, is well qualified to dive into the broad, important topics, as each panelist all be awarded an innovators award for their work in biodiversity and technology prior to the forum.
The forum, titled “Planet in Peril: The Future of Humanity” is set for 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 2, in the Strand Union Building ballrooms on the Montana State University campus and will be moderated by Robert Rydell from the MSU Department of History, Philosophy and Religious Studies.
An Edward O. Wilson Biodiversity Technology Pioneer Award will go to Benyus for her work in the field of biomimicry.
Kjetil Våge, an oceanographer who has extensively studied ocean currents and global climate, and Laurie Marker, a wildlife biologist who has focused on studying and conserving the cheetah will also be receiving Biodiversity Technology Pioneer Awards.
The George R. Stibitz Computer and Communications Award will go to David Ferrucci, a computer scientist and Robert Gunderson, a space flight engineer.
"Planet in Peril" is free and open to the public.
- Can't make the forum? Watch Janine's Ted Talk and other inspiring videos
Here's more about the awards, from MSU:
Both awards were established by George Keremedjiev, founder and director of the American Computer and Robotics Museum in Bozeman and a 2009 recipient of an honorary doctorate at MSU. For the past 18 years, the museum has been presenting the Stibitz awards, named in honor of the man who helped develop the first modern digital computer. Prominent biologist E.O. Wilson – who received a Stibitz award in 2006 for pioneering the Electronic Encyclopedia of Life – presented the first Wilson awards in 2009.
Although they sit thousands of miles apart, when Joe Zazzera, Jane Toner and Peggy Chu meet each Monday afternoon, they connect in hopes of creating a better world through sustainable, natural design.
Set to graduate as Certified Biomimicry Professionals—or BPros—in the Fall of 2016, the trio is a snapshot of the diverse minds that come together during biomimicry professional training experiences.
Joe (in Arizona), Jane (in Australia), and Peggy (in Hong Kong), have teamed up for their BPro Virtual Design Lab project to produce a work(play)book that will integrate biomimicry principles into the Living Building Challenge, a rigorous building certification program run by the International Living Future Institute.
“It’s workbook to guide the design processes and to translate biomimicry into Living Building projects,” Joe said. By incorporating many of the lessons learned over the last two years into the workbook, the team hopes to make biomimicry accessible to the cutting-edge architects designing future built environments.
The next cohort of BPros like Joe, Peggy and Jane, will be selected this spring. Participants in the BPro program must be simultaneously enrolled in the Master of Science program through ASU Online. The 11th hour deadline for MS applications at ASU is Nov. 15.
Integrated with the online MS program offered in partnership with the Biomimicry Center at ASU, the B38 Biomimicry Professional program (BPro) has evolved to include a focus on professional leadership, field experience, community building and personal development. In six, week-long field sessions interspersed with the MS online learning courses, you can become one of few biomimicry thought-leaders trained in this first-of-its-kind program tapping into nature’s genius. The 2016-2017 cohort will travel to Costa Rica, Hawai’i, Vancouver Island in British Columbia, the Canadian Rockies, barrier islands in South Carolina, and the Arizona Sonoran Desert.
Biomimics at Biomimicry 3.8 have been working in the field for the last 18 years and note a rapidly growing demand for biomimicry practitioners in industry. To that end, the programs are designed to train graduates to:
- Lead in-house implementation of biomimicry across a variety of applications;
- Initiate or transform a consulting practice in the field of biomimicry;
- Incorporate biomimicry into education for the next generation of biomimics;
- Develop innovative and sustainable solutions to the most pressing global challenges.
Like Joe, Jane, and Peggy, future BPros have the chance to turn training into action that can help biomimicry inspire progress in their research, work and workplaces.
When the authors of the Living Building Challenge work(play)book meet via online video chats each week, they always agree on one thing, that they’re working toward hopeful solutions.
“It’s a very hopeful journey,” Jane said. “One I wouldn’t trade for anything else in the world.”
Become a biomimic! Apply now for the Master of Science in Biomimicry at ASU Online and register to learn more about the upcoming BPro program. There’s a lot more information on the Biomimicry 3.8 Professional Training page, including videos, links and student shout-outs about the program.
The Biomimicry Center at ASU got a boost last week to help use nature-inspired solutions to create sustainable, affordable aid devices for people living with various impairments.
The Center was granted $99,072, the highest annual award, from Women & Philanthropy, an ASU foundation. The boost represents a proud moment for Biomimicry 3.8 and Dayna Baumiester, who is the co-director of the Biomimicry Center and co-founder of B38.
Here's more about how the grant will help researchers, according to a The State Press article by reporter Danielle Quijada.
Prasad Boradkar, co-director of the Biomimicry Center and leader in the "Life in Motion: Exploring Biomimicry-based Mobility for People with Visual and Mobility Impairments" project, says that it was the “compelling and powerful idea” behind the proposal that helped them receive the grant.
“I think they saw the area we are looking into and methodology by which we are doing this as really compelling and something that could have impact,” Boradkar says.
Past products produced for the disabled have proven to be expensive, ephemeral, poorly designed and hard to repair, so The Center’s goal is to design assistive technology that will be more sustainable based upon their observation of nature, Boradkar says.
The Biomimicry Center at ASU was founded in 2015 , and currently offers two graduate-level programs online, with additional on-campus development programs.
Quijada's article also notes biomimicry's wide application potential.
(Business Operations Specialist Mary Kivioja) recently graduated with a degree in Business and Global Health from ASU in 2014. She says she is thrilled to have the luxury to apply the interest and knowledge she already had by handling the financial and budgetary matters with the project.
“I think it is an exciting new field that has come to ASU and can really be applied in so many different fields, so I don’t think it will be necessarily just science students that latch on to this idea,” Kivioja says. “It’s really something that any discipline at ASU can really incorporate into their education.”
She adds that she is particularly happy to be working on this project because she says it feels “more important and impactful.”
Want to become a biomimic? Apply now for the Master of Science in Biomimicry at ASU Online and register to learn more about the upcoming BPro program. There’s a lot more information on the Biomimicry 3.8 Professional Training page, including videos, links and student shout-outs about the program.
Nature-inspired innovation is coming to SXSW Eco 2015.
We’re bringing experts, ideas and dancing shoes (more on that later) to the conference that unites leaders and idea makers interested in driving economic, environmental, and social change together in Austin, Texas, Oct. 4–7.
Throughout SXSW Eco 2015, Biomimicry 3.8, along with the Biomimicry Institute and partner SXSW Eco, will present an original conference track, Nature, Innovation, and the Future of Design.
Biomimicry 3.8 co-founders Janine Benyus and Dr. Dayna Baumeister will join a host of our experts throughout the conference to share the foundational ideas of biomimicry.
This will include a series of networking opportunities, panels and workshops, exploring the intercepts of science, technology and design that are inspired, mentored, and measured by the standards of our natural world.
We took over Austin’s Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center on Sunday, Oct. 4, for a special biomimicry event, including the 8th Annual Biomimicry Summit, the Biomimicry Global Design Challenge Awards and a Biomimicry 3.8 dance party from 6–11 p.m.
Oct. 4 at Austin’s Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center:
Oct. 5–7 at SXSW Eco:
- Learn more about the full biomimicry track within SXSW Eco, Nature, Innovation, and the Future of Design, with sessions from leaders in the biomimicry field
- Catch Biomimicry 3.8 Founder Janine Benyus’ featured speech on Oct. 5
- Get introduced to new biomimicry case studies, behind the scenes at B3.8 and why nature is the epicenter of innovation
In less than two months, we're heading to South Africa to immerse ourselves in the Leshiba Wilderness, in Limpopo, South Africa.
- Ready join us and be inspired by nature? Registration ends Sept. 25. Learn more.
During Biomimicry 3.8’s upcoming Discover Nature’s Genius Immersion Workshop hosted in South Africa Nov. 9–14, we'll explore how hippopotamus sweat could be nature's genius answer for all-in-one waterproof sunscreen and antibiotic cream. We'll examine the baobab tree and be inspired by its lightweight structure stability.
Those are just a few of the organisms we'll learn from.
Along with offering credit for Biomimicry Specialist Certification, our Discovering Nature’s Genius Immersion Workshops introduce participants to a new way of viewing and valuing the genius that surrounds us in nature–offering tools for uncovering new possibilities to integrate innovative and sustainable solutions and strategies.
This is one of the few immersion workshops led by world-renowned biomimicry expert and Biomimicry 3.8 Co-Founder Dr. Dayna Baumeister, who brings 18 years of field experience to the course.
Watch Dr. Baumeister explain what to expect in South Africa
This workshop offers credit for the Biomimicry Specialist Certification.
The Living Product Expo 2015: It’s new. It’s groundbreaking. It’s bringing together the world’s “leading minds in the product industry” to help “ignite a revolution in the way materials are designed, manufactured, and delivered.”
And we’ll be there.
Biomimicry 3.8 is always excited to be part of innovative conversations—and there will be plenty of people talking about how to start a material revolution at the Living Product Expo, which runs Sept. 16–18 in Pittsburgh.
Look to hear from biomimicry experts during the Innovation Inspired by Nature panel, Thursday, Sept. 17, featuring Managing Director Nicole Hagerman Miller and Biologist and Design Strategist Jamie Dwyer.
You can follow along online using #LP15 on Twitter. And learn more about inspiring material revolution through the International Living Future Institute.
"Could a large-scale industrial factory actually be designed to be good for the environment and for the ecosystem that surrounds it? And could that, in turn, generate long-term economic value for the population of people connected to that factory? Author and global bioengineering guru Janine Benyus doesn’t just believe it’s possible—she’s partnering with the world’s biggest carpet tile manufacturer to set the example to follow."
Click here to read the full article.
Sharskin, Hippo Sweat and the Wood-Wide Web: From Flat Earth to Whole Earth Thinking, New York Festivals Radio Awards Bronze winner.
The genius of nature’s design, recipes and principles is serving as the inspiration for redesigning human civilization. This Biomimicry revolution is spawning a next industrial revolution. Biomimicry masters Janine Benyus and Jay Harman illuminate the forefront of nature-inspired design, including human organization and the power of networks.
For more radio shows from Bioneers, check out their soundcloud page.
Immersion Workshop | Discover Nature’s Genius in Montana
August 2 – 7, 2015
Blacktail Ranch, Wolf Creek, MT
Turn your observations of nature into creative solutions for human challenges.
Whether you’re new to biomimicry or expanding your biomimicry skill set, this Immersion Workshop in beautiful Wolf Creek, Montana, will elevate your ability to discover nature’s genius and use it as the special ingredient for innovation.
It offers a method for going beyond simply appreciating nature to actually tapping into its successful strategies to elevate the way we approach and solve human challenges.
The workshop will be lead by Jamie Dwyer, Biomimicry 3.8 Biologist & Design Strategist, and Karen Allen, Restoration Ecologist, both of whom are Certified Biomimicry Professionals and deeply experienced biologists with lengthy knowledge of Montana’s ecosystems and biomimetic interpretations.
This workshop offers credit for both the Biomimicry Specialist and Biomimicry Professional certifications.
Plus, the first five registrants will receive a $235 early registration discount.
Feb 15, 2015
New Biomimicry Center Puts ASU at the Forefront of Emerging Discipline
Launch symposium on March 3 will feature Janine Benyus and ASU President Michael Crow.
A new cooperative venture at Arizona State University aims to make ASU a key academic hub for the emerging discipline of biomimicry.
Since Janine Benyus first observed and named the field in her 1997 book, Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature, designers, engineers, businesses and other innovators have increasingly turned to nature in search of inspired ideas.
The Biomimicry Center at ASU, which officially launches with a symposium on March 3, is a co-branded collaboration between ASU and Biomimicry 3.8—the consulting and training firm co-founded by Benyus and Dr. Dayna Baumeister.
“The primary mission of the Biomimicry Center is to enhance academia’s ability to address a variety of sustainability challenges using strategies inspired by nature,” said Baumeister, who will serve as co-director of the new center along with Professor Prasad Boradkar of The Design School in ASU’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts.
The practice of biomimicry is transdisciplinary by nature, bringing biologists into collaboration with disciplines as diverse as architecture, management, engineering and even psychology. ASU has embraced biomimicry in recent years as part of the university’s commitment to innovation and sustainability. The Biomimicry Center will coordinate new and ongoing research and curriculum initiatives amongst campus institutions and the fast-growing global network of companies and consultants practicing biomimicry.
“Biomimicry has the unique ability to inspire and synchronize the work of diverse disciplines to mirror the unification of nature,” ASU President Michael Crow said. “The Biomimicry Center will serve a similar function within the ASU community while preparing students to apply their skills and interests to solving society’s most complex challenges.”
The Center is supported by the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, School of Sustainability, W. P. Carey School of Business, School of Life Sciences, and Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, as well as the Office of Knowledge and Enterprise Development and the Provost’s Office.
In addition to coordinating broad sustainability initiatives related to biomimicry, the Biomimicry Center also will offer the first-ever Master’s of Science in Biomimicry and the first-ever Graduate Certificate in Biomimicry. These online programs are accredited versions of professional training programs developed by Biomimicry 3.8 since 2008. Both the master’s and certificate programs have begun accepting applicants through ASU Online, and development of an on-campus master’s program is underway.
“Biomimicry thinking is a skill set for 21st century careers,” Boradkar said. “It allows professionals in any field to contribute to sustainable solutions through systems-thinking, creativity, and interdisciplinary collaboration.”
The Center officially launches on March 3 with an interactive symposium on ASU’s Tempe campus. The event will feature TED-style talks, hands-on activities, artistic performances, and a discussion between Janine Benyus and ASU President Michael Crow about the role biomimicry can play in generating innovative solutions to sustainability challenges.
About The Biomimicry Center
The Biomimicry Center is a joint effort between Arizona State University and Biomimicry 3.8 (B3.8) that facilitates education and research endeavors to create sustainable solutions by emulating biological forms and strategies. The Center fuses the intellectual disciplines and work of biologists, designers, engineers, business professionals, communicators, material scientists, chemists and others to address system-level opportunities and challenges.
Ecosystems contain thousands of reinforcing and balancing feedback loops. In fact, one of nature’s primary design lessons—from a collection we call Life’s Principles—is to be locally attuned and responsive through the use of feedback loops.
The Feedback Loop is our version of nutrient-dense humus. It’s rich information about our work and research that supports our clients, professional training programs and the meme of biomimicry.
Here’s what’s inside…
- Introduction by Janine Benyus
- Integrate Development with Growth: A lesson from Nature
- Development and Growth at Biomimicry 3.8: A Banner Year
- Biomimicry and Packaging Design for Natura: A Case Study
- Teaching the Practice of Biomimicry
- Upcoming Immersion Programs in 2015
- Special Announcement: The Biomimicry Center at ASU
- Launch of Biomimicry Graduate Degrees