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A Series of 2 Programs
Learning from Nature

2-part series based on the book Biomimicry - a new science that studies nature's best ideas and then imitates these designs and processes to solve human problems.

A printer-friendly version of this page 89 minutes
Closed Captioned

Directed by Paul Lang
Produced by Paul Lang & David Springbett
for CBC's "The Nature of Things"
Executive Producer: Michael Allder
Presented by David Suzuki
With Janine Benyus

"A profound way for a viewer to invest 90 minutes." Prof. Robert M. Goodman, Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison
This two-part series is based on the acclaimed book, "Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature", by Janine Benyus. Biomimicry (from 'bios' meaning life, and 'mimesis' meaning to imitate) is a new science that studies nature's best ideas and then imitates these designs and processes to solve human problems.

The programs put us in touch with men and women who believe our teachers are all around us. These biomimics are learning from our fellow earthlings - the ecological survivors who have prospered for millions of years. They've survived and met their needs while creating conditions conducive to life for all others around them.

After decades of research into the lives of insects, bivalves, plants and mammals, biomimics are uncovering major insights into how life occurs. Their explorations of nature aren't so much "about" nature in order to circumvent or control her. Instead, biomimics are guided by humility as they begin to learn "from" nature so we can learn to fit in alongside the rest of nature, at last and for good.

After 3.8 billion years, `life' knows what works and what lasts on earth. Mimicking these designs and strategies - their recipes - could change the way we grow food, harness solar energy, run businesses, even the way we make materials.

The two programs introduce us to several scientists, businesspeople, and authors in this field. Featured in the first program are: Wes Jackson of The Land Institute in Texas; Ray Anderson, CEO of Interface, Inc.; Paul Hawken, author "Natural Capitalism"; and of course Janine Benyus, who co-hosts the program. In the second program we meet Herbert Waite, a biologist at USC - Santa Barbara; Robin Garrell, an organic chemist at UCLA; and Jeff Brinker of Sandia National Labs.

The titles in the series are:

Biomimicry - Part One - Using natural processes as the model for agriculture and business.

Biomimicry - Part Two - Advances in materials and medicine based on research into natural processes.

Grade Level: 7-12, College, Adult
US Release Date: 2003     Copyright Date: 2002
DVD ISBN: 1-59458-206-8     VHS ISBN: 1-56029-990-8

"BIOMIMICRY is a profound way for a viewer to invest 90 minutes. They convincingly show the importance (and also the challenge) of changing our world view to be one that focuses on a dialogue with, and adopting the ways of, nature rather than one of domination and control."
Professor Robert M. Goodman, PhD, Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

"Introduces a concept worthy of wide exploration in a world dazzled by the industrial artifacts around us...Over the millions of years, nature's life forms through natural selection have had to live with the constraints of the entropy law on a solar budget."
Wes Jackson, The Land Institute

"Viewers of BIOMIMICRY: LEARNING FROM NATURE will be captivated by an insider's view of exciting current research, dazzled by the infinite possibilities open for exploration, and inspired by the implications that biomimicry has for a healthier world."
Alexis Karolides, AIA, Principal, Rocky Mountain Institute

"BIOMIMICRY focuses on a few people in the world who see nature as a fantastic teacher and apply its teachings in ways that benefit humanity and attempt to save the planet from the destruction wrought by the conquering exploitative mentality."
Dr. Eugene Tsui, architect and author

"A gentle, fascinating tour, replete with biological phenomena that should be familiar to most students...The examples presented can serve as starting points for in-class discussions and group activities that explore the question: What else can we biomimic?"
The American Biology Teacher

"Impeccably produced and provides a carefully developed introduction to a very complex subject. The illustrative footage is skillfully shot, and the interviews with researchers are well placed and concise. Recomme

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Links Biomicry web site Biomicry film web site

Awards and Festivals
The Chris Statuette, Columbus International Film & Video Festival
First Place, EarthVision Enviromental Film Festival
Finalist Award, International Wildlife Film Festival, Missoula
Environmental Media Awards

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