Biomimicry Consulting UK Natural Intelligence for business, innovation and change
Biomimicry, Design & Change Biomimicry is an innovative and proven approach to design, manufacturing and science that uses inspiration from nature to solve human problems. The ideas used biomimicry are based on 3.8 billion years of continuous development, with constant testing in rapidly changing environments.
In contrast to the humandesigned systems of manufacture and processing which have pushed our own species and millions of others to the brink, nature works differently. From colour without pigment, selfassembly structures, solarpowered air conditioning, trigger release adhesives, and smoke sensors a thousand times more sensitive than those developed by the smartest companies, nature has much to teach. With challenges ahead of a scale unimagined a few years ago, nature is arguably the most potent teacher available and an index for innovation. Practitioners in architecture, construction, process control, engineering, communications, relationship management and all aspects of design will find biomimicry to be a treasure trove of ideas, inspiration and practice. Biomimicry Consulting UK was established in 2008 to provide consultancy, design and change leadership to private and public sector organisations, academic institutions and communities. Consultant members include Ecosapiens, Exploration Architecture and Professor Julian Vincent. The solutions and services offered create dramatic opportunities to increase performance, reduce material cost, eliminate waste and increase effectiveness and profitability. Recent engagements have included events to coach leaders at leading architect practices, keynote speeches at the Hay Literary Festival, teaching at Schumacher College, RIBA lectures, and climate engagement events across the country. Current projects from members of the Biomimicry Consulting UK team includes the following: o
The Sahara Forest Project aims to grow desert trees with a water capture system inspired by a desert beetle
An evolution of the TRIZ problem solving methodology that brings biological knowhow to complex challenges
Biomimicry Consulting UK Natural Intelligence for business, innovation and change o
One of the world’s most ambitious climate and sustainability programmes, using biomimicry as a core design and deployment principle.
Inspiration from nature – the male Peacock’s feathers are all brown, with colour created by refraction.
Typical introduction to biomimcry Prospective clients and colleagues often ask what a typical firststep engagement might look like for an organisation wanting to engage it’s staff or others on a journey towards integrating biomimicry and good business practice. The programme outlined below is indicative of the content of a typical introduction. A typical two programme led by Andy Middleton, Professor Julian Vincent and Michael Pawlyn costs in the region of £7500 / €8600, excluding normal costs. Day One Introductions, warmup. Warm up and scenesetting. Andy Middleton Lecture 1:‘State of the Nation’ Julian Vincent, Michael Pawlyn, Andy Middleton 3 linked 1015 minute presentations giving a themed journey debating past, present and future of the challenges and opportunities arising from sustainability; biomimicry, TRIZ and design; examples of biomimicry as a design philosophy; connecting biomimicry, communication and change. Lecture 2: ‘Journeys in Biomimicry’ Julian Vincent A brief history of biomimicry and explanation of the core principles with examples. Include overview of what is happening elsewhere. Lecture 3: ‘Biomimicry and design’ Michael Pawlyn Principles and examples of current best practice. Include Cradle to Cradle. Lecture 4: Biomimicry and structure’ Julian Vincent Lecture 5: ‘Biomimicry and social change’ Andy Middleton Explanation of the application of each core principle to organisation development, planning and communication with practical examples Day Two Workshop 1. Putting biomimicry to work Andy Middleton Small group reflection; testing knowledge against current practice. Lecture 6. TRIZ , natural organising principles and hierarchy Julian Vincent Lecture 7. Natural Systems and the ABLE Project. Michael Pawlyn. Workshop 2. Applying natural systems thinking. Michael Pawlyn.
Biomimicry Consulting UK Natural Intelligence for business, innovation and change Lecture 8. Natural Processes explored through the Sahara Project. Michael Pawlyn. Workshop 3. The practice and profession of transformation. Andy Middleton. Lecture 9 Natural Change Levers. Michael Pawlyn & Andy Middleton. Tools to make change happen, closing the knowingdoing gap and turning knowledge into business opportunity. Wrap Closing comments, summary and actions
Key people Michael Pawlyn Michael established Exploration in 2007 to focus exclusively on environmentally sustainable projects that take their inspiration from nature. Prior to setting up the company he worked with Grimshaw for ten years and was central to the team that radically reinvented horticultural architecture for the Eden Project, where he was responsible for leading the design of the Warm Temperate and Humid Tropics Biomes and subsequent phases. He initiated and developed the Grimshaw environmental management system resulting, in December 2000, in the company becoming the first firm of European architects to achieve certification to ISO14001. In September 2003 he joined an intensive course in natureinspired design at Schumacher College, run by Amory Lovins and Janine Benyus , where he met Andy Middleton, who was facilitating the programme. Michael has lectured widely on the subject of sustainable design in the UK and abroad, including at the Royal Society of Arts with Ray Anderson, CEO of Interface, Google’s annual ‘Zeitgeist’ conference and at the Royal Geographical Society’s annual conference ‘Sustainability and Quality of Life’. Julian Vincent In October 2000, Julian took the newlycreated Chair in Biomimetics in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bath, UK, and for 25 years, as created a formidable reputation for design and innovation inspired by nature. He has published over 280 papers, articles and books and has been invited to give conference lectures (mostly plenary) and research seminars around the World. His interests are very wide, covering aspects of mechanical design of plants and animals, complex fracture mechanics, texture of food, design of composite materials, use of natural materials in technology, advanced textiles, deployable structures in architecture and robotics, smart systems and structures. In 1990 he won the Prince of Wales Environmental Innovation Award. In 1997 he gave the Trueman Wood lecture at the RSA. Andy Middleton Andy is a social entrepreneur, author and environmentalist with a passion for blurring the boundaries between eco design, smart business, sustainability and adventure. He is a third
Biomimicry Consulting UK Natural Intelligence for business, innovation and change generation adventurer and change activist with a background encompassing exploration geology, extreme kayaking, enterprise, and business. He is Founder Director of the TYF Group www.tyf.com , a business dedicated to linking play, learning and business in a way that’s good for people and the planet; TYF teaches over 12,000 people a year. Andy is a Council Member of Countryside Council for Wales and a Board Member of Cynnal CymruSustain Wales www.sustainwales.com . His work as an organisation development and sustainability consultant, facilitator and speaker has taken him to over a dozen countries, with engagements ranging from keynotes at national conferences to biomimicry and business workshops for the Chinese government. His current projects include the development of ‘A Million Minds’ to bring work on live sustainability projects into the classroom for schools, college and university, and a plan to get 1000 climate champions on the ground in Wales by the end of the year. Andy blogs at http://ecosapiens.squarespace.com