The Biomimicry Institute

Cross section of a nautilus shell.

The Biomimicry Institute’s AskNature project brings biology to the design table by inspiring and enabling innovators around the world to emulate nature’s time-tested forms, processes, and systems as they solve this century’s greatest challenges.

Biomimicry’s purpose is to naturalize biomimicry in the culture by promoting the transfer of ideas, designs, and strategies from biology to sustainable human systems design.

The Biomimicry Institute has three main foci:

  • Teach and empower people to use biomimicry to solve real world sustainability problems such as water, energy, transportation and food systems through their Biomimicry Design Challenges
  • Mobilize educators and regional practitioners through the Global Biomimicry Network, where some 3000 educators have a place to access free content
  • Educate and inspire through their online database of nature-based solutions,

Nearly every design challenge humans face shares commonalities with the challenges the rest of life has already adapted to over billions of years of trials and refinement. We are awash in relevant biological literature, but only a tiny percentage of it is presented in a way that’s accessible to the people who invent our world.

AskNature seeks to structure this massive amount of information in ways that bridge this knowledge divide for millions of non-biologically trained engineers, architects, product designers, planners, chemists, material scientists, and policy makers for whom nature’s strategies would be a revelation.

Through collaborative partnerships, we support innovative projects that protect vulnerable wildlife from extinction, while restoring balance to threatened ecosystems and communities. Our work is divided into six main program areas – Wildlands Conservation, Oceans Conservation, Climate Change, Indigenous Rights, Transforming California, and Innovative Solutions.

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