Biomimicry Thinking in Georgia

Biomimicry Thinking
October 22-27, 2017 | Sautee Nacoochee, Georgia

Join us among Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains for an eye-opening learning experience designed to equip you with the framework to help conceive, create, and implement innovation ideas inspired by nature’s genius.

Set against the backdrop of the Appalachian forest, this five-day deep dive into the Biomimicry Thinking methodology explores how intelligence from nature can elevate your design process, leading to innovation that is cutting edge, effective, elegant, and inherently sustainable.

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Why Attend

Re-frame and refresh your approach to problem solving by adding the Biomimicry Thinking methodology to your design process. A science-based approach implemented by Fortune 500 corporations and nonprofits alike, Biomimicry Thinking harnesses the power of asking: “How would nature..?” and this workshop will equip you with tools and knowledge of this methodology so you can translate biology to application. Activities will include practicing with interdisciplinary teams on design challenges based on real-world questions.

Who Is It For

The workshop is for creative problem solvers searching for a way to re-frame and elevate their innovation and design processes. You’ll join a motivated, hopeful, interdisciplinary crew of participants to discover how biomimicry can unlock a new way of thinking about your toughest challenges. Past workshop participants have included CEOs, engineers, interior designers, professors, high school teachers, directors of innovation, architects, university students, entrepreneurs, and more! No prior experience with biomimicry is required – all skill levels welcome.

Where Is It

Elohee Center is located in the foothills of the scenic Blue Ridge Mountains on 220 acres of undeveloped land two hours from Atlanta, Georgia. The idyllic setting allows you to (re)connect with nature while getting up-close-and-personal with the local ecosystem and mentor organisms that exemplify the genius design part that is nature.

What to Expect

Each day is brimming with content and exploration. You should plan to clear your agenda and fully immerse yourself in the biomimicry experience!



What can you expect to experience while from the Biomimicry Thinking workshop? Here’s a preview of what each day will include:

October 22: Meet the group at Atlanta airport for a 3:00 pm shuttle to the Elohee Center. Settle into your room and get oriented to your surroundings while getting to know your fellow participants. We’ll provide an overview of what to expect for the week. After dinner you’ll have the chance to relax and prepare for the busy week ahead.

October 23: After an orientation to the local ecosystem, we will start building a foundation of the biomimicry philosophy and design approach through a mix of lectures and activities. We will introduce daily iSites - a form of biomimetic nature journaling - to help collect inspiration from nature. In the afternoon, we will go through a fast-paced, fun biomimicry design jam in teams.

October 24: We will tackle each step of the biomimicry thinking approach with an interdisciplinary team-based design challenge throughout the remainder of the week and kick off with how to scope a design challenge biomimetically. With a clear understanding of the team’s design challenge, we then start the process of discovering natural models that can inspire solutions.

October 25: Picking up where we left off, the team work continues as interdisciplinary team dynamics become leveraged to unpack and understand the mechanisms behind the inspiring natural models to the design challenges. We shift from analytical to creative in the afternoon with the kick off to the ideation phase where the biomimicry solutions start to come to life.

October 26: Life’s Principles - the deep patterns behind the way life works - is the focus of the day as we learn about them in the classroom and outside in the local ecosystem. We then use Life’s Principles as a framework for evaluating and optimizing the solutions to the design challenges.

October 27: As a final wrap-up, we consider how the learnings and experiences collected over the course of the workshop can be applied in the work that we do. We’ll close the workshop after breakfast and have you back to the Atlanta airport by noon.


Jamie Dwyer–Biomimicry 3.8 Principal, Design & Research
Biomimicry provides the perfect opportunity to fuse Jamie’s seemingly divergent interest in the fields of biology and architectural design. Her work for Biomimicry 3.8 is is often focused on integrating biomimicry in the built environment, from uncovering local biological champions as inspiration for place-based design to working towards creating factories that provide ecosystem services like a forest. Jamie has also led innovative research efforts in product design and social innovation. Working with companies such as HOK, BNIM, Interface, and Kimberly-Clark, Jamie has managed projects, led research and inspired many designers. Jamie has led dozens of budding biomimics through the biomimicry design process as well as through ecosystems around the world during past biomimicry workshops.

Erin Rovalo–Biomimicry 3.8 Senior Principal, Designer
Drawing from an architectural design background, Erin Rovalo now weaves biomimicry into her design thinking expertise, which has allowed her to cultivate a distinctly innovative approach to finding sustainable solutions to a wider range of design sectors and challenges, such as packaging design and organizational development. For the past 7 years, Erin has successfully managed biomimicry innovation initiatives for Natura, Estee Lauder, Lone Meadow, Interface, and Burt’s Bees. Erin teaches Biomimicry & Design and iSites: Biomimetic Nature Journaling in the accredited MSc Biomimicry program at ASU and has supported the training of over 150 Biomimicry 3.8 certification alumni. Erin is a PhD researcher at Loughborough Design School investigating the use of prototyping in the biomimicry ideation process.


The all-inclusive price for the workshop includes delicious, organic and when possible locally harvested breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks; overnight accommodations for five nights; all activities during the week; tuition and course materials; transportation from the Atlanta (ATL) International Airport; and administration costs. A variety of accommodations are available at Elohee to meet your needs and budget from camping to private en suite rooms. Some rooming types are limited and first come, first served.  See photos of the rooms on Elohee’s website. Reserve your seat for only $500. Full payment is due September 1, 2017.

Camping | $3,200
Bring your own tent and sleeping bag for a more rustic experience. Camping platforms are provided as well as a dedicated bathroom & shower facility. Limited availability.

Shared room en suite | $3,500
These shared rooms have two single beds and a private en suite bathroom. You can request a roommate or we will assign you a roommate of the same sex.

Private single with shared bathroom | $3,600
These rooms provide more privacy and contain one single bed. A full bathroom is shared between two private single rooms.

Private king en suite | $3,900
These deluxe rooms provide a comfortable king size bed and your own en suite bathroom. Limited availability.

Registration Information/Deadlines

Online registration forms must be completed by October 6. All instructions and pricing information is included within the form. Don’t delay, our workshops fill quickly. 

In addition to a life-changing experience, immersion workshop participants also receive access to the Introduction to Biomimicry online course and earn credit toward a Biomimicry Specialist Certificate.

Learn more about immersion workshops here.

Employee Wellbeing

Employee Wellbeing

Each workshop includes a team design challenge that allows participants to employ Biomimicry Thinking to brainstorm nature-inspired solutions to real-world challenges. One past team took on the challenge of designing environments that support employee wellbeing.

Purify Water

Purify Water

Each workshop includes a team design challenge that allows participants to employ Biomimicry Thinking to brainstorm nature-inspired solutions to real-world challenges. One past team took on the challenge of purifying water of heavy metals, particulates, and pathogens.

Building Efficiency

Building Efficiency

Each workshop includes a team design challenge that allows participants to employ Biomimicry Thinking to brainstorm nature-inspired solutions to real-world challenges. One past team took on the challenge of utility efficiency, aiming to design a high use building focusing on waste management with no water supply.

This is by far one of the best workshops I have ever attended. Biomimicry is the missing link for the next generation of innovations. Be prepared to be amazed!

— Phil Samuel, Chief Innovation Officer, BGMI
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