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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Agenda - Biomimicry: nature as a solution for people’s needs

CEO Agenda

Biomimicry: nature as a solution for people’s needs

business meeting

There is an essential connection between humanity and the environment. In recent years the rise of environmental consciousness has created immediate advantages for everybody. Numerous scientific studies over the years have demonstrated the positive impact of the natural environment on the well-being and health of people. An increasing quantity of research has demonstrated how time spent in nature can be beneficial for these purposes. In fact, the use of green spaces affects not only the health and happiness of individuals but also communities and society.

This realisation is become widespread awareness, and it is now necessary to have the humility to recognise nature as the best possible source of inspiration and answers to human problems. In this perspective, that’s where the concept of biomimicry comes into play and help us understand how nature and the mimics of its strategies can help solving human design challenges.

The concept of biomimicry

Biomimicry is the practice of making technological and industrial design copy natural processes. The basic concept of biomimicry is that nature has already figured out the problems that humans are attempting to solve.

Biomimicry gives a sympathetic, interconnected understanding of life’s mechanisms. It is a strategy that mimics and takes inspiration from the methods used by existing species. The aim is to establish products, processes, and systems that solve our greatest design challenges sustainably and in solidarity.

In general, using biomimicry enables people to accomplish more with less: more output and revenue, with less effort and expense. It also focuses the attention to sustainable assets, methods, and policies.

Two successful examples

We often struggle to find complex solutions, but now it is clear that nature can inspire us to find the solutions we are looking for. The intent is to comprehend and modify the natural designs that already exist to make things energy, water, and aerodynamically efficient. With excellent results, nature has functioned as a source of inspiration for several modern inventions.

The Eastgate Centre in Zimbabwe is a building that passively self-regulates the internal temperatures. The Eastgate is inspired by the termite mounds, in fact it was constructed using materials that have a high heat capacity, which enables the materials to store and release heat before the interior temperature changes. The building takes advantage of the wind, allowing air to circulate throughout the building with the help of some fans. This self-regulating ventilation design saved the building from the cost of purchasing an air-conditioning system, the associated electricity bill, and the resulting environmental pollution.

The head of Japan’s Sanyo Shinkansen bullet train from Osaka to Hataka is modelled on the beak of the kingfisher bird. The older models of these trains generated too much atmospheric pressure when rushing through the tunnel systems, causing excessive noise and vibrations. The kingfisher’s ability to dive into the water without making a splash became an inspiration to the engineers. They noticed that this became possible due to the pointed, streamlined shape that characterised the kingfisher’s head and beak. Train speeds increased by 10% when the new train head was designed to resemble a kingfisher; at the same time, air pressure and electricity consumption dropped by 30% and 15%, respectively.

Further scenario

Utilising nature as an incubator of sustainable solutions, biomimicry offers us an exciting way to observe the natural world and generate our creativity while solving problems.

Evolution has produced an amazing variety of adaptations in the natural environment, each single one suitable for a particular function. It makes sense that humans continue to make attempts to mimic the natural world through biomimicry, due to millions of years of trial and error resulted in innovative solutions.

Thanks to the concept of biomimicry, scientists, engineers, and designers look for inspiration from the environment to find solutions on engineering challenges.

It will be interesting to see what we will be able to accomplish by humbling observing and analysing nature and the environment around us.


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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Agenda - Biomimicry: nature as a solution for people’s needs
Riccardo Pandini
Riccardo Pandini is an Academic Tutor at the University of Milano-Bicocca and a writer at the State of Mind, an online journal of psychology, psychotherapy, neuroscience, psychiatry, and various current affairs.


Riccardo Pandini is an opinion columnist for the CEOWORLD magazine. Connect with him through LinkedIn.