Nature as Inspiration for Business Innovation

Nature Inspired Design

What is Biomimicry? Simply put, it is emulating nature’s genius to solve human problems.

A leader in biomimicry is Janine Benyus. For years she has been inspiring innovators to learn from natural models to design sustainable products and processes.

In her blog, The Living Enterprise, Adiel Gavish talks about using biomimicry to Create a Living Enterprise by integrating Nature’s sustainable design principles into its systems, products and services. Drawing on Janine Benyus’ work, Adiel makes a number of important points:

Secret to Thriving: If people take a closer look at the way in which the natural world makes and does things, they will discover the secrets to not only surviving, but thriving on this planet.

Innovative Design: Businesses can learn from and apply nature’s infinite reservoir of design knowledge to improve their systems, products and services.

Improving Business: By unlocking the secrets to nature’s success, businesses can not only improve their systems, but watch them adapt, grow and evolve like a living ecosystem or organism.

Below are amazing examples of biomimicry in action. The article, “The15 Coolest Cases of Biomimicry” gives details on these innovations and what in nature inspired it.

  • Velcro based on burrs
  • Passive Cooling based on tower-building termites
  • Gecko Tape based on the hairs on gecko lizards’ feet
  • Wind Turbine based on humpback whales’ flippers
  • Bionic Car based on a tropical fish shape
  • Friction-Reducing Coating based on shark skin

Do you have other examples of nature-inspired designs?

This entry was posted in change management, green, sustainability, sustainability consulting, sustainability strategy, Sustainable Business and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Nature as Inspiration for Business Innovation

  1. Cat McGuire says:

    Other examples of biomimicry? Yes!

    The airplane!
    Also baby pouch carriers (like marsupials)

    • Carina says:

      I think one of the keys to taking ideas that are innovative within your organization and turning them into actual products is knowing what you’re good at, and partnering with other organizations to actually deliver and develop the idea if the implementation is not your core competency. I think many companies have niche ideas or niche solutions to problems that never get implemented outside the company because the implementation itself is outside their core competency.

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