Dr. Astrid Layton was invited by the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the University of Miami to share BiSSL group work on bio-inspired system resilience. Her talk, titled “Using Biological Inspiration to Guide the Design of Human Networks for Resilience” is also now featured in the University’s Climate Resilience Academy UM YouTube series.
Abstract: Biological ecosystems have been through millions of years of R&D, producing complex systems of systems made up of interacting species that are able to support individual needs while maintaining system-level functions. In this talk Dr. Layton will show that ecosystems offer a relatively untapped source of design inspiration for improving the resilience of our human engineered networks in conjunction with goals like sustainability and cost. Quantitative descriptors and analysis techniques are adapted from ecology, enabling desirable ecosystem characteristics to be used as optimization and design guides for industrial resource networks (or eco-industrial parks, EIPs), water networks, supply chains, cyber-physical systems, and power grids. Ecological characteristics such as high levels of materials/energy cycling and a unique balance between redundant and efficient pathways offer novel routes to achieving traditional engineering goals.