About the Challenge

“Learning about biomimicry makes me more optimistic that we can turn the tide, and I like that there is so much to observe and so many questions to ask once you start looking into a natural system or organism: it's a lifelong learning experience.” 

- Challenge Participant

University students and young professionals are the global leaders of tomorrow. As they begin their careers, they face a rapidly changing world filled with pressing environmental and social challenges. To solve those challenges and enable a regenerative and resilient future, they need a new toolkit. By introducing biomimicry’s design methodology and sustainability mindset to future leaders, and providing them with a framework for practicing it, we inspire and equip them to create materials, products, and systems that will reinvent our industries and communities.

The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge provides an opportunity for university students and young professionals to gain hands-on experience with biomimicry—to do design, not just study it. Through free resources such as our Biomimicry Toolbox, webinars, design briefs, and mentorship, teams learn and practice the fundamentals of biomimicry and create bio-inspired solutions aligned with nature and the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Each year top teams are invited to further their designs as part of our Biomimicry Launchpad.

The Biomimicry Global Design Challenge inspires the next generation of leaders while helping to foster innovative and sustainable ideas to solve serious social and environmental problems. 


Participants in the Challenge:
  • Show a deeper connection to the natural world and develop a regenerative mindset.

  • Enhance their ability to apply design thinking to problem solving.

  • Demonstrate deeper biological literacy, especially among non-biologists.

  • Develop skills that are essential in a complex world, including creativity, problem-solving and critical thinking, interdisciplinary cooperation and collaboration, a sense of agency, and resilience and persistence.

Since 2015:
  • 3500 participants

  • 415 teams

  • 53 countries

In 2020:
  • 107 teams submitted projects

  • 70% increase in participating individuals over 2019

  • 40+ colleges and universities participated

  • Addressed 14 UN SDGs

  • 22,000+ people visited the BGDC website and accessed our educational resources 

View the Work of Winners and Past Participants

Browse the Biomimicry Institute's Solutions Gallery to see how the Global Design Challenge empowers a new generation of innovators to create a regenerative world, inspired by nature’s mastery.