The Bamboo Institute

LOCATION: California, USA

SUMMARY: "The Bamboo Institute has developed a website as an online resource and is currently seeking resources to build and plant our first campus. The prize monies would be used to accomplish this.

The Plan of Action:
1) Attain non-profit status, build the membership and seek philanthropic support to expand the resources available.
• Approach bamboo and design visionaries to serve on the board of directors
• Capitalize on award publicity for initial membership campaign

2) Develop the Bamboo Institute online into a global educational resource and bamboo nexus. We envision a virtual campus that will serve as a place for people from all over the globe to learn, contribute and connect. Initial areas to develop:

• Global Bamboo Resource Guide:
- Online map based guide of bamboo species and resources.
- Research Library

• Best Practices Database:
- Propagation, farming, production and processing
- Construction (Shelter, Irrigation, Bridges, etc.)
- Inventive uses (products and designs)

• Design and Building Labs

• Bamboo Museum

• Kids Activity site

• Online Store
- Sell bamboo products

3) Outreach to educational institutions worldwide
• Attract Scholars, Researchers and Designers from a wide range of fields to participate
• Arrange study abroad programs to give students hands on field experience

4) Design, build and plant the first campus as a prototype as a model to be replicated
• Find and secure a suitable location that would benefit
• Study local needs, history and traditional uses of bamboo
• Design campus which shall include:
- a sizable nursery to generate future bamboo resources and revenues
- Innovative Housing for students and guests
- Expansive work areas and building labs
• Organize and obtain needed resources
• Build and plant the first campus

5) Focus initial research and design efforts on developing
• Shelter systems
-Rapidly deployable emergency shelter
- Ultra low cost housing for both rural and urban environments
- Modular structural multipurpose framing systems

• Promotion of the most efficient propagation and building techniques to people and areas in of greatest need

PROBLEM SPACE: Our strategy is founded on the principles of comprehensive anticipatory design science and the remarkable properties and potential of one of the most amazing regenerative resources on our planet. One of our primary goals is to explore, develop, utilize and teach these principles by applying them. We are an educational organization dedicated to learning what is feasible, verifying our results and replicating new solutions as they are found.

SOLUTION: "Our strategy is to create a vibrant educational organization whose mission is to focus human energy and ingenuity on utilizing bamboo and comprehensive anticipatory design science to help solve some of the most important challenges facing life aboard our planet.

Committed to the design philosophy of ever doing more with less, the Bamboo Institute seeks to devise, develop, promote and deploy comprehensive strategies and innovative designs to fully utilize the unique properties and vast potential of bamboo, the strongest, fastest growing plant on the planet, “ to make the world work for 100% of humanity, in the shortest possible time, through spontaneous cooperation without ecological offense or disadvantage of anyone"".

Bamboo has been used by humans for a multitude purposes since time immemorial. The vital role it has played in the development of civilization, especially in Asia, cannot be underestimated. However, in recent history, bamboo has become associated with poverty since so many in the developing world still rely on it for survival. As a result, this amazing resource has been taken for granted and left unmanaged by governments and virtually overlooked by researchers until recently.

In the past 15 years, developments in processing techniques and interest in eco-friendly materials has made bamboo an increasingly valuable wood substitute for use in construction, papermaking and textiles. Consequently, the demand for bamboo is surpassing the supply, which has resulted in the over-exploitation, rapid depletion and loss of natural stands around the globe. The UN estimates that nearly half of the 1,200 species of bamboo are threatened with extinction due to deforestation. Yet the demand for bamboo will only continue to increase in the years to come.

Fortunately, bamboo is a rapidly, renewable resource that has incredible potential to improve the environment while at the same time providing income generating opportunities for those in greatest need. Bamboo is easy to cultivate without the use of pesticides or fertilizers on marginal land unsuitable for growing other crops. It prevents erosion and is unsurpassed in its ability to sequester carbon and produce biomass.

The Bamboo Institutes will focus on promoting the ecologically sustainable development and management of bamboo resources around the world and aim to assist those in greatest need through education and technical assistance.

CONTACT: [email protected]