From Human-Centered to Life-Centered Design
As designers, whether we’re creating packaging, products, or places, we usually think first of human purpose and pleasure. Nature’s elegance inspires us with beautiful forms, folds, spirals, patterns, shapes, layers, materials and colors—immeasurably enriching human imagination. But three current opportunities in design prompt us to also seek guidance from nature: environmental impact, complex systems, and new technologies for making.
We have been taking a broad look at how the explosion in biological knowledge can be informative for design in regards to these three different opportunities. In this sense we tend to talk about ‘nature’ as encompassing all living organisms on earth, their interactions, behaviors, systems, and incredible diversity. We are excited about how looking to nature can change not only what we create but also the way we think, and the way we make.
Additional Supporting Materials
- What does life-centered design mean for us?
- What are the similarities between human-centered design and life-centered design?
- What opportunities within design seem promising to rapidly learn from the natural world?
- What are some examples of how looking to nature has helped us think differently?
- What are some examples of how looking to nature has helped us make differently?
Timothy McGee IDEO
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