Insights from Nature

Using insights from nature to inspire and build a brighter future

What will the future look like?

What are the models that provide hope for a bright and prosperous future?

The Lessons from Nature (LfN) learning program explores these questions and how nature can be a mentor. Nature is revealed as a source of information and inspiration for creative thinking and re-design. What can nature teach us about health care, running economies on limited resources, providing homes that self cool and heat? Nature does all these things far better, far more effectively and far more beautifully than humans do. By learning the Lessons from Nature we can redesign our societies to be more like nature, to be abundant, beautiful and free from pollutants.

What would the world be like if the principles found in the natural world were consistently applied to the way in which products and industrial and economic systems were designed?

Nature recycles waste efficiently, uses renewable power from the sun, is resilient to sudden changes, adaptable over time to new conditions, and self regulates through feedback. A future economy and society, a circular economy, could have the same characteristics.

Lessons from Nature is built around principles that can be identified in nature including:


 Waste equals Food:In nature everything is cycled so what looks like waste is actually food for the next cycle. For example, dead tree leaves will become soil for a new tree. This insight can be applied to turn current linear human production systems into closed loop systems in which scarce resources are used to best effect and waste is eliminated.



Multiple Benefits: In nature organisms have multiple benefits, they do not simply have one purpose. The goal of a tree is to reproduce to provide the next generation and in doing so also provides food for insects, shelter for animals, nutrients for the soil from their decomposing leaves, turn carbon dioxide into oxygen, and help regulate temperature and rainfall. Nature can be abundant. Cherry trees don't just produce one blossom or cherry; they produce masses! When learners re-imagine the future they don't always have to think about having less.


Diversity gives Strength: Nature relies on a large variety of species, systems and organisms that allow it to withstand external shocks. Diversification effectively reduces risk.



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This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This website reflects the views only of the author,
and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
Lessons From Nature (LFN) ©2012
Lessons From Nature (LFN) ©2012