Butterflies exhibit vibrant colours and stay clean using nano-scale structures on their wings. Designers and engineers have emulated this strategy to create self-cleaning coatings, fabrics and paints, and electronic display screens.

Business School part of 3 million Euro research grant win

The Business School has won a bid for European research funds to work on ‘sustainability-driven innovation’ (SDI). Research and training in Exeter will concentrate on Biomimicry, creating business innovations inspired by nature.

The total budget for the consortium is just under 3 million Euros over three years, of which the Business School will receive just over 300,000 Euros.

Exeter is part of a multi-partner consortium of eight international universities, coordinated by the European Academy of Business in Society (EABIS). Preliminary research suggests that SDI requires management competences and organisational capabilities rarely found in traditional business-led, technology-driven innovation. Therefore the overarching objective of the project is to understand how management processes and practices need to change in order to foster sustainability-driven innovation, and thus how companies can help tackle today’s environmental and social challenges. It can also lead to new business models that create and add value, leading to improved performance in economic, environmental and social terms.

The funding has been granted from the Seventh Framework Programme of the European Commission and the research will help support the European Union’s 2020 Vision Statement of developing a ‘smart, sustainable and inclusive economy’. 

For more information please contact the project leader Dr Sally Jeanrenaud.

Image of morpho butterfly supplied by Shutterstock.

Date: 14 February 2013

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