Biomimicry, Bio-inspired Design

Biomimicry involves the translation of knowledge obtained from the natural world into new innovations. When using nature as inspiration we learn from a system that has developed resilience, adaptability and efficiency over centuries. This is also called bio-inspired design. Lessons from nature can be translated into innovations in the fields of products, organisational forms and processes.

Nature constantly seeks new equilibria and actively responds to change. Biomimicry involves knowledge development of natural functions, models, systems and strategies and the translation of this knowledge into practical applications to drive innovation. Rather than focussing on the separate links, it is important that the entire chain is visualised during the process. This integrated approach rests on the fact that everything is connected and balanced in nature.

Nature as inspiration

For example, Wageningen biologists are working with Delft technologists on a drone with flapping wings that is as nimble as an insect. Seahorses, tree frogs and octopuses have also provided inspiration for useful applications – for surgery among other things.

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