On Sustainability International Award for Excellence

The On Sustainability Journal Collection offers an annual award for newly published research or thinking that has been recognized to be outstanding by members of the On Sustainability Research Network.

Award Winner for Volume 16

Biomimicry in Sustainable Food and Agriculture

The field of biomimicry has been practiced successfully since the mid-nineteenth century. It was popularized by Janine Benyus, who argued that human enterprises would benefit from taking inspiration from nature’s designs. Benyus’ biomimicry principles provide a framework for the development of more sustainable solutions for addressing human challenges. Much of the application of biomimicry, however, has centered on the design and engineering of machines and manufactured products. This article explores the relevance of biomimicry’s principles to the field of sustainable food and agriculture.


Dr. James C. Bassett serves on the faculty of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment and Sustainability as well as the Fielding School of Public Health. He is a recipient of the Pritzker Fellowship for Environment and Sustainability Education and has received several awards for outstanding teaching and advising. Dr. Bassett has been a featured speaker at numerous conferences, meetings and professional workshops about sustainability. In his work as a consultant, his clients have included major corporations and nonprofit organizations. He has served on several boards of directors and as a curriculum advisor for the Annenberg/CPB educational series "Race to Save the Planet." As a founder of Project Xela Aid - a medical/environmental aid NGO - he has worked on nutrition-centered agricultural initiatives with indigenous communities in Guatemala.

Past Award Winners

Volume 15

Nature-Centered Leadership: Challenging the “Rules of the Game”

Spencer Stober, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability: Annual Review, Volume 15, Issue 1, pp. 1-13


Volume 14

Interpreting the Social Dimension of Sustainability: Connecting Theory and Community Planning Practice with a Social Determinants of Health Framework

Jacklyn Kohon, The International Journal of Sustainability in Economic, Social, and Cultural Context, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp. 1-19


Volume 13

Operationalising the Ideas of Justice in Forest Governance: An Analysis of Community Forestry and REDD+ Processes in Nepal

Poshendra Satyal, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability: Annual Review, Volume 13, Issue 1, pp. 1-19


Volume 12

Implementing Bioremediation Technologies to Degrade Chemical Warfare Agents and Explosives from War Affected Regions in Sri Lanka.

Sithamparanathan, Elackiya, The International Journal of Environmental Sustainability, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp. 1-20


Volume 11

Sustaining African Cities: Urban Hunger and Sustainable Development in East Africa

Andrea M. Brown, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability: Annual Review, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp.1-12



Volume 9

A Systematic Search of Trends in Rural Development Research: Type of Research, Originating Regions, and Engagement with Sustainability

Neus (Snowy) Evans, Michelle Lasen, and Komla Tsey, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability: Annual Review, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp.1-17


Volume 8

Avenue J: Lessons from the Past and from Nature to Heal Lubbock’s Future

David A. Driskill, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability: Annual Review, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp.11-27


Volume 7

Incorporating Community Governance: Planning Sustainable Energy Security

Diane Costello, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability, Volume 7, Issue 4, pp.349-366


Volume 6

Social Sustainability and Ecotourism: Rethinking Development for Social and Environmental well-being in the Caribbean

Veronica Dujon, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability, Volume 6, Issue 3, pp.181-192


Volume 5

Community Sustainability and Social Justice: Whose Vision?

Diane Costello and Brian Bishop, The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic, and Social Sustainability, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp.141-160