There is growing recognition and awareness that nature can help provide viable solutions that use and deploy the properties of natural ecosystems and the services that they provide in a smart, ‘engineered’ way (EC). These living solutions provide sustainable, cost-effective, multi-purpose and flexible alternatives for various objectives. Working with nature, rather than against it, can further pave the way towards a more resource efficient, competitive and greener economy. It can also help to create new jobs and economic growth, through the manufacture and delivery of new products and services, which enhance the natural capital rather than deplete it (EC).

With that in mind, the big question is, why are nature based solutions not used more to address the global urban challenges?

The answer is that there’s a distinct skill and financing gap in the biotechnology sector. While we currently have great researchers in biotechnology too often the commercialization and hence implementation of their discoveries stumble due to a lack of personal experience in entrepreneurship and cooperation with industry leaders (Fritsch 2010).

In this regard, BUILD Solutions has to setted up transdisciplinary cooperation among universities and business, engaging students, teachers and researchers and providing them with the necessary entrepreneurial skills and connections to bring intelligent living solutions to the market, investigating biological systems, creating smart design prototypes, business plans, plans for start-ups and working with accelerators.

Our aim is to boost innovation, entrepreneurship and subsequent market uptake of intelligent living, biotech and biomimicry solutions to help green cities.

Ersilia foundation is responsible for the project evaluation and sustainability of the activities and educational programmes.

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