The Design Study Library: Compiling, Analyzing and Using Biologically Inspired Design Case Studies

We describe an interactive tool called the Design Study Library (DSL) that provides access to a digital library of case studies of biologically inspired design. Each case study in DSL describes a project in biologically inspired design from the inception of a design problem to the completion of a conceptual design. The approximately seventy case studies in DSL come from several years of collaborative design projects in an interdisciplinary class on biologically inspired design. Compilation of these case studies enables deeper analysis of biologically inspired design projects. An analysis of some forty case studies indicates that environmental sustainability was a major factor in about two thirds of the projects. DSL also appears to support learning about biologically inspired design. Preliminary results from a small, formative pilot study indicate that DSL supports learning about the processes of biologically inspired design.