SLU news

SLU talk in Buenos Aires about Nature-based Thinking in design and management

Published: 17 June 2022

The headline was Nature-based Thinking - to be inspired by nature when Thomas B. Randrup, Landscape Architect, professor in Urban Open Space Management was invited to speak at the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Urbanism (FADU), University of Buenos Aires.

Thomas presented the mindset of Nature-based Thinking, where the development of landscapes is being inspired by nature. The mindset (or concept) includes not only the landscape themselves, but also the formal or informal organizations owning, developing and managing it, and the local communities related to the landscape.

Nature-based Thinking also incorporates the relations between the landscape, the organizations and the local communities. How can natural processes inspire planning, design, construction and management? How can the relationship between the landscape and the local community be seen as a two-way, interactive process, rather than mere nature’s services for humans? And how can nature inspire the engagement between the local community and the formal (or informal) organizations, steering the landscape?

For the audience of primarily local practitioners, staff and landscape students from the University of Buenos Aires, Thomas gave examples from landscape architect competitions where he has participated with the ambition to do designs all inspired by nature. This creates a new type of urban nature, a new aesthetic and a new view on how we will live our life in the future.


The presentation was part of the marking of the end of the Breathing Infrastructures project, also called the Breathe/Respirar project, which is a study of the viability of the use of green sustainable fences to reduce the urban atmospheric contamination. The researchers argue for using nature as an inspiration to develop more sustainable and inclusive cities.

Breathe/Respirar is a multidisciplinary action research programme that explores how green infrastructure and other nature-based solutions contribute to air quality, health and wellbeing, and provide opportunities to enjoy co-benefits such as connecting people and nature and supporting development of an inclusive green economy. The Breathe/Respirar programme, which began its development in 2017, is being implemented through a series of projects jointly undertaken by the universities of Sheffield and Buenos Aires in collaboration with schools, communities and other organisations.

Read more:

Co-producing Nature Based Solutions (NBS) and restored ecosystems - transdisciplinary nexus for urban sustainability (SLU project page)

Breathe/Respirar project (The University of Sheffield website)


Thomas Randrup, Professor
Department of Landscape Architecture, Governance and Management
Phone: 040-41 54 12