Janine Benyus showcases some innovative breakthroughs in science and engineering thanks to biomimicry, which seeks to emulate “Nature’s best biological ideas to solve human problems”. It is a fascinating and enlightening peak at an emerging trend built around the simple essential question, “How has nature overcome this obstacle?” The ensuing discoveries invariably lead to more sustainable and efficient designs and technologies.
The implications for education are profound. Not only do students need access to investigations that encourage them to pursue solutions to complex problems by looking at how nature has solved the problem, they also need opportunities to observe, explore, and reflect on the natural world . At AskNature.org high school students can enter a Biomimicry Student Design Competition to help learn the skills necessary to find and understand nature’s elegant methods for surviving and thriving.
Ultimately, our long term survival and sustainability is contingent on our capacity for maintaining the system that sustains us. It is imperative that we expose students to new methods for solving problems.