protect from floods
Nature’s refined solutions, mapped to your design challenges.
Spider web is strong and elasticSpiders
Webs of orb spiders are elastic and strong because of sacrificial bonds that break and then reform
Surface of wing kills bacteriaclanger cicada
Nanopillars on surface of wing of the clanger cicada kill bacteria by expanding surface area to the point of stretching and ripping.
Protein binds permanentlyRed Junglefowl
Protein from chicken egg permanently binds vitamin by changing shape
View all Biological Strategies
Design solutions to human challenges, inspired by biological strategies.
Swarm Logic technology reduces energy useEncycle
Wireless power controllers in Swarm Logic technology enable communication among building appliances to reduce peak electricity demand and costs.
Shinkansen TrainJapan Railways Group
High speed train silently slices through air
Friction-reducing ship coatingFraunhofer CML
A superhydrophobic coating on the outside of ships reduces frictional resistance, allowing vessels to move more easily through the water.
View all Inspired Ideas
Everything you need to learn and teach about biomimicry and life centered design.
Sort Yourselves OutTom McKeag for BioDream Machine
This active 15-30 min exercise demonstrates, in an experiential way, the principles of self-organization, emergence and feedback. It can also be extended into a design exercise.
Biomimicry with Janine BenyusBioneers
This 2 min. video uses voiceover from Janine Benyus to introduce the subject of biomimicry.
Interdisciplinarity: Bring biologists into biomimeticsEmilie Snell-Rood
Engineers, chemists and others taking inspiration from biological systems for human applications must team up with biologists, writes Emilie Snell-Rood in this opinion piece for Nature.
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Themed clusters of strategies, ideas, and resources, curated by you.
A growing collection of content created by our talented and dedicated AskNature volunteers
The Garden of Secrets
Your next big idea could be hiding in the bushes
A collection of morphological traits of bees, completed as part of a study about bio-inspired design at the University of Calgary.
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How might we …
Here are a few Biological Strategies to get you started …
Photosynthesis converts solar energy into chemical energyplants
Photosynthesis in plants converts solar energy into chemical energy using electrons and protons from water.
Pupil enables clear vision in extreme light conditionsTokay Gecko, ,
The pupil of nocturnal geckos enables clear vision in extreme light conditions by becoming very large at night and constricting to a thin slit with several pinholes during the day.
Hairy legs manipulate sticky web strandsSpinybacked orbweaver, Golden Silk Orbweaver
Leg hairs of orb-weaver spiders enable sticky web manipulation by reducing contact area.
From permaculture to Velcro® to winglets, humans have been looking to nature for inspiration for as long as we’ve been inventing. Inspired Ideas catalog the stories behind realized and conceptual product, service, and system components that have their roots in biology …
The Land Institute permacultureThe Land Institute
Perennial grain cropping mimics natural ecosystem behavior.
Concentrated solar plantMassachusetts Institute of Technology
Optimal arrangement of solar array mirrors based on Fibonacci spirals.
Anti-icing coating prevents frost and ice buildupRykaczewski Research Group, Arizona State University
Coating infused with antifreeze reduces frost and ice accumulation
Interest in biomimicry has skyrocketed over the past decade, and there are now thousands of Resources—including books, articles, videos, lesson plans, groups, training programs, and more—available to folks who want to learn, teach, and practice this valuable problem solving approach. Get started with a few of our favorites here …
Sharing Biomimicry with Young PeopleBiomimicry Institute
An orientation to biomimicry for K-12 teachers and others who work with youth.
The world is poorly designed. But copying nature helps.Vox and 99% Invisible
This 6 minute video introduces biomimicry, the application of biomimicry at different scales, and connections to the circular economy.
Biomimicry Basics: How to Innovate Using Nature’s StrategiesDenise DeLuca
In this 4-hour online course you will learn a step by step method for turning nature's strategies into innovative design solutions using the biomimicry design spiral.
Collections tie together Biological Strategies, Inspired Ideas, and Resources into themes that are often correlated with a particular human challenge, geographic area, or set of environmental conditions. Check out a few of our favorites and then start your own …
Chemistry of Nature
How can we learn from nature to create materials without using life-threatening chemicals and high temperatures?
Solving for a changing climate
The science is clear, and so is our imperative. What can we learn from nature as we design solutions for mitigating, adapting to, and reversing climate change?
Cooling Down In The Heat
From sweating, to panting, to pulling water from air, living systems rely on a number of forms and processes to stay cool and hydrated.
“Nature is constantly innovating, endlessly experimenting and ever reinventing itself in the face of new challenges.
From materials and products to business models, biomimicry offers a fresh lens for all the dreamers and doers remaking the man-made world.”