Biomimetic intelligence for systemic innovation in the built environment

Sayed, Ehab (2022) Biomimetic intelligence for systemic innovation in the built environment. Doctoral thesis, Northumbria University.

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Human-made systems have become the most significant driving force of our earth system. In order to fuel their growth and development, homo sapiens have resorted to the excessive extraction of natural resources such as fossil fuels, widespread deforestation and land development resulting in habitat and biodiversity loss and production and consumption habits that are increasing greenhouse gas emissions and altering the earth’s biosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, and atmosphere, making them unfavourable for life. This research is a direct response to the Anthropocene and the recognition that the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) industry is a major contributor. Hence, biomimicry is proposed as the philosophy through which realignment between human and earth systems may be achieved. The research adopts a constructionist methodological approach that emphasises the power of gaining knowledge through immersion in the research activity and highlighting areas of connectedness. A mixed methods approach rooted in pragmatism was employed for data collection. The UK construction industry’s readiness for biomimetic innovation was assessed in a scoping study and a case study sought deeper understanding and new insights about the industry’s impact. From the case study, quantitative data were obtained and analysed showing how a FTSE100 property development and management firm manages ‘waste’ and the resultant impact. This was followed by experiments on the ‘waste’ collated from the organisation using bio-fabrication and bio-utilisation methods to sequester carbon and remediate toxins, the results of which require replication and verification. Finally, the case study’s findings were analysed using the ‘viable system model’ (Beer, 1984). A set of specifications were created as ‘Biomimetic Intelligence Priorities’, which drove the development of a platform that uses a variety of theories, methods, algorithms, and machine learning tools to provide ‘Biomimetic Intelligence for the Metasystemic Evolution of Terrestrial adaptations’ - BiomIMETA. For policymakers, BiomIMETA presents a tool that can shape the development of appropriate policies and predict their impact. For businesses, designers, and innovators, BiomIMETA is a powerful tool for biomimetic and reflexive design. Finally, BiomIMETA represents a wealth of future research opportunities many of them transdisciplinary.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: biomimicry, cybernetics, earth system science, second order science, cosmic evolution
Subjects: K900 Others in Architecture, Building and Planning
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Architecture and Built Environment
University Services > Graduate School > Doctor of Philosophy
Depositing User: John Coen
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2023 08:49
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2023 09:00

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