I am very pleased to announce that my great friend Denise DeLuca has just published her new book [Re]Aligning with Nature – Ecological Thinking for Radical Transformation. Denise Denise is Director and co-founder of BCI: Biomimicry for Creative Innovation (of which I am a member), a vibrant network of unique innovators, professional change agents, and design professionals with a shared passion for radically transforming businesses and organizations to be in harmony with nature..
The book takes a pictorial approach, making great use of the many illustrations by Stefanie Koehler. Denise says there were two reasons for this:
The book takes on big, gnarly, and potentially depressing topics. There are many great books by great minds that cover the same topics in great depth; however, people tend get bogged down reading them, or don’t read them at all. I wanted a book that is easy to read and even re-read, and that taps into the visual part of the brain. I want to create gentle, empathetic, and visually appealing way for people to explore a challenging subject. I’m hoping this format will compel readers to spend more time with the book, read between the lines, and make it personally real and relevant.
The other reason is that I started writing this book several times, but kept getting bogged down. So I took the advice that I give my sustainable design students when they get bogged down writing their thesis papers – express your ideas in the format that works best for you and then we’ll figure out how to get that in paper form. I love crafting lecture presentations for different audiences, carefully creating images that enhance what is being said, so I actually wrote the whole book in PowerPoint!
It is always interesting to hear Denise discuss diversity, especially from the perspective of biomimicry where businesses can become inspired by nature:
It’s great that companies and other organizations are changing hiring and promotion practices to increase diversity. Unfortunately what tends to happen is the real benefit of diversity is lost when everyone – regardless of gender, nationality, age, etc. – is expected to conform to cultural norms as soon as they walk in the door. We need new norms that can release and leverage diversity, not just have it around for show.
Re-aligning ourselves with nature and our own human nature is like bringing lenses into focus, allowing us to see clearly. In practice, it allows us to tap into and engage the full and diverse capacity of ourselves and our employees, which we need to address constant change.
I had the pleasure to review Denise’s book during the final stages prior to it being published, and I wrote the following for the cover:
In [Re]Aligning with Nature, Denise DeLuca, one of the world’s leading lights in biomimicry, invites us to join her on a richly-illustrated journey of transformation, where nature is the real world, leading those who are curious and creative into ecological thinking. Characterizing this natural paradigm as six interconnected mutually reinforcing elements of abundance, synergy, systems, resilience, curiosity and trust, this punchy and powerful manifesto, treatise and roadmap shows us how to let go of conventional thinking, helping us to re-envision our practices and culture, ourselves and our organizations and to achieve practical, long-term results.
[Re]Aligning with Nature – Ecological Thinking for Radical Transformation is published by White Cloud Press.