Biomimicry Chicago was thrilled to kick off our Deep Roots Initiative with this workshop! An engaged and diverse group of Chicago Region stakeholders explored what it means to apply biomimicry to the built environment and its potential for transforming our approach design. For a summary of the workshop, click here.
Collaborate to Create the Future Today
Biomimicry Chicago is hosting Chicago’s first ever Deep Roots Workshop on Friday, April 21, 2017, at the Lurie Garden. Explore how biomimicry can help us design and build lost ecosystem functions back into our built environment.
Date April 21, 2017
Time 8:30am - 4:30pm
Place Lurie Garden, Millenium
Park, Chicago, IL
April 15, 2017
$95 Early Bird (deadline April 7)
$125 Regular Pricing
This program qualifies for 6 learning units. We will provide a certificate of completion for self-reporting upon request.
* Eventbrite processing fees will be added at the time of registration
Urban flooding, water pollution, topsoil erosion, urban heat islands... Did you ever wonder WHY we face these challenges? While their individual causes are complex, they result from one systemic failure: the systematic removal of ecosystem services from our built environment. To address this disconnect, Biomimicry Chicago and our Deep Roots Initiative partners are seeking to catalyze a new comprehensive science-based vision for our region, one where we learn from nature to integrate ecosystem functions back into our built environment.
Through exploration of native ecosystem functions in a multi-disciplinary workshop setting, participants will uncover how learning from nature can provide insight as to where current practices are falling short, and where opportunity exists to develop innovative more robust, resilient solutions for the future.
Participants will have a chance to put these ideas into action through site observations, interactive lectures, and brainstorming activities using local case studies to re-imagine the restorative and regenerative potential of our built environment.
Would you give me an example?
Our Deep Roots initiative is advocating for “green” infrastructure as well as “gray” that learn lessons from natural systems and replicates natural functions within our built environment through the use of plants and/or human ingenuity. At the building scale, we advocate to go beyond green roofs and permeable paving toward figuring out how building roofs, facades, canopies, and infrastructure can embody and contribute to the ecosystem function of water management as trees do by “employing multiple, non-uniform small surfaces to divert, slow and temporarily hold water flows” on and around a structure. Mesh canopies, texturized façade panels and systems not yet invented can be designed to slow the flow and temporarily hold water on a surface, storing water for future use, lessening the burden on municipal infrastructure, lowering the ambient temperature of our region, and improving the health and sustainability of all inhabitants (human and non-human).
And this example is just about the ecosystem function of stormwater management. Our Deep Roots Initiative will explore a multitude of ecosystem functions, including fostering biodiversity and sequestering carbon to name a few.
What can I do to prepare for the workshop?
Biomimicry 101 - If you aren't too sure if you know what biomimicry is, now is the time to do some homework! There are plenty of free resources on the web. Amy's Biomimicry 101 for the built environment video is a great primer for our workshop. If you are feeling ambitious, you can also check out the 3-hour Biomimicry 3.8 Introductory Online Course which costs $65.
Biomimicry & the Built Environment - Above and beyond the Biomimicry 101 primers, there is quite a bit of innovative work in progress these days on how to think about and use biomimicry in the built environment. Below are links to a few relevant articles as well as Genius of Place reports to get your mind thinking!
- “Biomimetic Urban Design: Ecosystem Service Provision of Water and Energy” by Maibritt Pedersen Zari
- “Anthropogenic Landscapes, Human Action and the Process of Co-Construction with other Species: Making Anthromes in the Anthropocene” by Agustín Fuentes * and Marcus Baynes-Rock
- “Merging paleobiology with conservation biology to guide the future of terrestrial ecosystems” by Anthony D. Barnosky, et. al.
- “The science, policy and practice of nature-based solutions: An interdisciplinary perspective” by Carsten Nesshöver, et. al.
- Stockholm Resilience Centre Research
- The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Framework including and introduction to Ecosystems and Their Services
- Application of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment Framework to a natural resource management, policy and planning framework for South East Queensland - The SEQ Ecosystem Services Framework
Genius of Place Reports:
- Seedkit: Design Concepts Learned from Pacific Northwest Forests (Urban Greenprint)
- Genius of Biome, Temperate Forests (HOK & Biomimicry 3.8)
- Genius of Place: Nature's Strategies for Managing Stormwater in the Willamette Valley, Oregon (Biomimicry Oregon)
- Genius of Place (Open Space and Mountain Parks, City of Boulder, Colorado)
What better way to learn from nature than to tour the gorgeous Lurie Garden at Chicago’s Millennium Park with ecologist and Executive Director of the Millennium Park Foundation, Scott Stewart? Additionally, we will learn the intricacies of ecosystem function and services from landscape architect and environmental designer, Jim Patchett of Conservation Design Forum. Biomimicry Chicago Co-Leaders Amy Coffman Phillips and Rachel Hahs will facilitate the workshop and help you to apply nature’s lessons to the context of the built environment using a biomimicry lens.
- 8:00 a.m. - Registration. Enjoy coffee while networking!
- 8:30 a.m. - Opening Remarks, Introductions, and Activity. Learn about our Deep Roots vision and get to know workshop participants.
- 9:30 a.m. - Introduction to Key Ecosystem Functions. Learn what biomimicry teaches us about the importance of ecosystem functions in our built environment.
- 11:00 a.m. - Lurie Garden Walk with Activity. Get outside and explore the Lurie Garden through a biomimicry lens!
- 12:15 p.m. - Lunch and Networking
- 1:15 p.m. - Built environment vs Native Ecosystem “Gap” Analysis Activity. Apply your new biomimicry knowledge from the morning activities to evaluate local case studies!
- 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Social Hour, Sponsored by Travis Hasse Distilling Company. Collectively discuss our Deep Roots Initiative - what might Chicago look and function like if it learned from the ecosystems it inhabits? How can we best structure our initiative to achieve that goal?
Join Biomimicry Chicago's growing network of professionals interested in collectively defining sustainability for the Chicagoland region at our one-day Deep Roots Workshop. At our workshop you will:
Explore the grounds of the Lurie Garden with ecologists and learn about how critical ecological functions establish a foundation for inherent sustainability and resilience of our native ecosystems
Learn about ecosystem functions as applied to the built environment through interactive activities and case studies
Learn biomimicry tools and strategies for learning from nature to create innovative solutions to critical challenges
Network with people interested in redefining what's possible in our built environment
Contribute your perspective and expertise to a collective brainstorming session around how a Deep Roots vision and framework could be applied to a case study, including the Lurie Garden
Add your knowledge to our visual ecological functions maps of organizations working to improve the sustainability and resiliency of our region
Give us your feedback on our Deep Roots Initiative - what do you envision?
Who Should Attend
The biomimicry innovation process thrives when diverse teams come together to solve a problem. Toward that end, we are bringing together a diverse group of architects, biologists, designers, engineers (civil, industrial...all kinds!), developers, municipal workers, landscape architects, contractors, students and educators, planners, and economists to explore how our built environment can learn from nature to foster a healthy life for all of its inhabitants.
Speakers & Facilitators
Sponsors & Sponsorship Opportunities
A big THANK YOU to our sponsors!
Biomimicry Chicago is always looking to partner with local organizations that share a vision for a restorative future and an interest in biomimicry! We are currently seeking sponsors for our Deep Roots Workshop to help promote the event, provide a case study for workshop discussion and brainstorming, sponsor the lunch or happy hour and develop opportunities for continuing collaboration.
If interested, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call Amy at (312) 523-5955 with the following information and any questions:
Contact name, phone, address and email
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