In the UK, there is a very significant community of researchers carrying out nature-inspired work and several companies also seeking to develop and deploy solutions, including the Centre for Nature-inspired Engineering at UCL, dedicated to drawing lessons from nature to solve grand societal challenges, and the Hub for Biotechnology in the Built Environment, funded by Research England to create the next generation of living buildings.

Prior to the Nature-inspired Solutions Innovation Network (NIS IN), this community had not been very coordinated despite some strong groupings of researchers and considerable interest from industry in collaboration to explore its potential. KTN seized the opportunity to start bringing this community together and help to foster greater levels of collaboration by setting up the NIS IN.

The NIS IN aimed to enable industry-academic interaction and collaboration, bringing together nature-inspired engineering solution providers and industry problem holders that could benefit from nature-inspired solutions. The NIS IN convened people who wouldn’t normally meet, to learn, connect and explore opportunities.

The programme brought together innovation stakeholders through social platforms, networking events, and webinars all whilst sharing best practices and showcasing success stories from the members. A number of these events were hosted in partnership with key stakeholders in the ecosystems including Heriot-Watt University, Centre for Nature-inspired Engineering and SynBIM.

Through this activity, KTN was able to build a picture of UK capabilities, competencies and interests across the sector and an understanding of how best to exploit NIS.

 

We would like to thank again our community for taking part in this fascinating journey. If you want to discover or join our current innovation networks, click here.

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