Michael Pawlyn

Michael Pawlyn

Toronto, Ontario
Architect, Systems Thinker, Regenerative Design And Biomimicry Expert
Michael Pawlyn is recognized as an authority in the fields of regenerative design and biomimicry, respectively. In 2007, he launched his own business under the name Exploration Architecture with the intention of specializing in high-performance buildings and providing solutions for the circular economy. He is regularly booked as a keynote speaker on innovation and hisTED talk has had over 2 million viewings. Michael jointly initiated the widely acclaimed Sahara Forest Project; the latest version of which was opened by the King of Jordan in 2017.
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Michael Pawlyn, the visionary Founder of Exploration Architecture, is a recognized expert in regenerative design and biomimicry. Since establishing his firm in 2007, he has focused on high-performance buildings and solutions for the circular economy, developing groundbreaking projects such as an ultra-low energy data center and a zero-waste textiles factory.

Before founding Exploration Architecture, Michael worked with Grimshaw for ten years, where he was central to the team that revolutionized horticultural architecture with the Eden Project. Michael Pawlyn’s innovative work on the Eden Project took place in Cornwall, England, showcasing his vision and implementation to prove that sustainable, carbon-neutral designs can be more efficient and cost-effective.

He was responsible for the design of the Warm Temperate and Humid Tropics Biomes and played a pivotal role in initiating Grimshaw’s environmental management system.Pawlyn’s inspiration from nature and focus on geodesics resulted in a structure that could be built regardless of final ground levels, reflecting his commitment to cutting carbon emissions and saving money through innovation.

Michael’s commitment to regenerative design goes beyond conventional sustainability, aiming to restore ecosystems, build resilient communities, and generate clean energy. His philosophy emphasizes truly restorative designs that learn from nature’s 3.5 billion years of evolution, providing solutions for genuinely sustainable building design and technology.

Michael Pawlyn is a sought-after keynote speaker on innovation. HisTED talk has garnered over 2 million views and he is in high demand as a speaker, consultant and thought leader. He jointly initiated the acclaimed Sahara Forest Project, opened by the King of Jordan in 2017, and co-initiated the ‘Architects Declare Climate & Biodiversity Emergency’ in 2019, an international movement with over 7,000 companies signed up to address the planetary crisis.

Since 2018, Michael has increasingly provided advice to national governments and large companies on transformative change. His influence is further evidenced by his writings, including his best-selling RIBA title “Biomimicry in Architecture” and his latest book, “Flourish: Design Paradigms for Our Planetary Emergency,” co-authored with Sarah Ichioka, published in December 2021.

Michael’s books are essential resources for architects, urban designers, product designers, and anyone interested in radical increases in resource efficiency. He proposes a set of bold regenerative principles that have the potential to transform how we design, make, and manage our buildings, infrastructure, and communities.

His work has been featured in esteemed media outlets such as Wired, Icon, The Guardian, The Economist, and National Geographic. Awards and recognition, including his collaboration with renowned global figures, reflect the global reach of his influence.

In a world facing unprecedented challenges, Michael Pawlyn stands as a beacon of innovative thinking, melding design, nature, and sustainability into a promising vision for the future of our planet. Whether addressing professionals, activists, policymakers, or clients, his expertise, passion, and vision make him an ideal speaker for any event seeking to inspire, challenge, and build a thriving future together.




Michael Pawlyn- Regenerative Design, Biomimicry And Systems Change


Michael Pawlyn Topic Presentations

leading through disruption: harnessing innovation for transformative change

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • In an era marked by rapid technological advancements, disruptive innovation has become more than a buzzword; it’s a critical force shaping industries, markets, and our very way of life. Michael Pawlyn, an architect at the forefront of sustainable and regenerative design, embodies this spirit of innovation by challenging traditional norms and ushering in transformative changes.His visionary leadership extends beyond architectural designs to influencing how businesses approach sustainability, resource efficiency, workforce accountability and corporate responsibility.

    In this thought-provoking presentation, attendees will gain insights into the principles and practices that foster disruptive innovation. Pawlyn will delve into the importance of cultivating a mindset that embraces change, nurtures creativity, and encourages collaboration across disciplines. He’ll also share practical strategies for leveraging disruptive innovation to drive leadership and transformation within organizations.

    This topic is an inspiring call to action for business leaders, decision-makers, and change agents who are ready to transcend traditional boundaries and catalyze meaningful change. Michael helps leaders reshape their organization to be ready for the future to maintain alignment with the societal and shifts occurring within younger generations. It’s about recognizing the untapped potential within and seizing the opportunities that disruptive innovation offers in shaping a more resilient, equitable, and prosperous future.

beyond sustainability: embracing regeneration as the next transformation

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • The move from sustainability to regenerative design represents more than just an environmental trend; it’s a profound shift in how businesses approach their relationship with the natural world. While sustainability has been an essential step in recognizing our responsibility to preserve and protect the Earth’s resources, regenerative design challenges us to go further, to actively enhance and rejuvenate the ecosystems we depend upon. Michael Pawlyn, a renowned architect and leader in this field, has been instrumental in bringing this concept to the forefront of modern design and business philosophy. His work with Exploration Architecture, and particularly with groundbreaking initiatives like the Sahara Forest Project, demonstrates the tangible benefits of a regenerative approach. It’s not merely about minimizing harm or maintaining the status quo but about creating systems that work synergistically with nature to produce a net positive impact.

    This approach resonates deeply within the business context, challenging organizations to rethink their strategies and operations from the ground up. Regenerative design encourages businesses to engage with natural systems, learn from them, and integrate them into their processes. This not only aligns with ethical and environmental stewardship but can also lead to more innovative and efficient solutions, promoting long-term financial stability and growth. Michael Pawlyn’s message to the business community helps blend the shift from sustainability to regenerative practices as not just an ethical imperative;, but opens a pathway towards a more resilient and prosperous future. It’s about viewing challenges not as obstacles but opportunities for innovation and growth. In a world facing unprecedented environmental challenges, this next essential shift represents a hopeful and practical vision for businesses that seek to thrive in harmony with our planet.

the gathering storm: responding to the surge in natural disasters and climate change

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • In a world experiencing record-breaking numbers of natural disasters and increasingly hotter temperatures, the question of how we respond to these crises has never been more urgent. The Gathering Storm is more than a metaphor; it’s a stark reality that calls for coordinated action and thoughtful leadership from individuals, policymakers, business leaders, and community organizers.

    Michael Pawlyn, a visionary architect with a deep commitment to environmental stewardship, brings a unique perspective to this global challenge. His experience in sustainable and regenerative design offers insights into how we can build resilience and adapt to a rapidly changing climate. Pawlyn will examine the trends and underlying causes of the increasing frequency and severity of natural disasters. He will explore the complex interplay between human activities, climate change, and the natural world, shedding light on the systemic vulnerabilities that exacerbate the impact of these events, and what it means for our future.

    Pawlyn will outline the agency and responsibility that leaders, individuals, and policymakers have in crafting meaningful solutions. He will discuss innovative approaches to disaster preparedness, emphasizing the need for adaptive infrastructure, community engagement, and holistic planning. From building codes and land-use policies to technological innovation and public-private partnerships, Pawlyn will delve into the strategies that can fortify our communities against the threats posed by a changing climate.

    This presentation will galvanize attendees to recognize their role in shaping a resilient and sustainable future, one where we not only weather the storm but emerge stronger, wiser, and more aligned with the values of environmental stewardship and social responsibility. It’s a call to action for a world facing unprecedented challenges and an opportunity to forge a path that honors both our ethical obligations and our potential for positive transformation.

biologically inspired innovation

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • Michael Pawlyn, a renowned architect with a deep-seated commitment to sustainability, has consistently turned to nature’s own solutions in his designs. His work with Grimshaw Architects on the Eden Project, which utilized principles such as geodesics drawn from natural structures, resulted in the world’s largest greenhouse and set a precedent for biologically inspired innovation. In his pursuit of innovation, Pawlyn founded Exploration Architecture in 2007, focusing on groundbreaking, high-performance buildings that integrate nature’s principles into modern design. This integration is more than an architectural novelty; it represents a fundamental shift in how we approach design and sustainability, challenging conventional methods, and offering new possibilities for efficiency, environmental responsibility, and regenerative practices.

    From ultra-low energy data centers to zero-waste textiles factories, Exploration Architecture’s projects demonstrate the tangible benefits of biologically inspired design. By mimicking nature’s wisdom, Pawlyn and his team have been able to devise solutions that not only reduce harm but actively enhance and rejuvenate the ecosystems they interact with. This approach resonates deeply with organizations looking to innovate, adapt, and grow sustainably. Pawlyn’s influence isn’t confined to architecture alone. As a thought leader and keynote speaker, his insights on transformative change reach a broad audience, including national governments and major corporations.

    In this presentation, Pawlyn will share his vision for the next frontier in design, outlining why biologically inspired innovation is essential and detailing the transformative shifts coming ahead in the future. He will provide real-world examples and actionable insights, empowering businesses to embrace a philosophy that not only sustains but regenerates and flourishes. The principles Pawlyn espouses are not mere trends or buzzwords; they are a roadmap for a resilient and prosperous future, grounded in nature’s enduring wisdom.

responding to our planetary crisis: a vision for regenerative change

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • The planetary emergency we face today is more than just a series of isolated environmental problems; it is a systemic crisis that demands a unified and innovative response. Michael Pawlyn, a visionary architect and advocate for sustainable and regenerative design, has dedicated his career to meeting this challenge head-on. By emphasizing a radical shift from conventional methods to biologically inspired innovation, he provides a roadmap for transforming how we design, build, and operate our structures and systems. Pawlyn’s approach isn’t just theoretical; it’s grounded in his extensive experience with projects like the Eden Project and the Sahara Forest Project. He understands that rising to this planetary challenge requires more than just adapting to a new set of rules; it demands a profound reimagining of our relationship with nature and the way we conduct business.

    In his presentation, Pawlyn will explore the urgent need for a transition from mere sustainability to full-fledged regenerative practices that not only preserve but actively enhance natural ecosystems. Drawing from his pioneering work in architecture and his profound understanding of nature’s principles, he will outline actionable strategies that businesses, policymakers, and individuals can employ to make a positive impact. This topic isn’t just about understanding the problems; it’s about inspiring and equipping audiences to be part of the solution. It’s about redefining success in a way that aligns with the health of our planet and the well-being of future generations. Michael Pawlyn’s insights provide a compelling call to action for anyone committed to rising to the challenge of our planetary emergency, offering a path forward that is not only feasible but essential for our collective survival and prosperity.

sustainability reimagined

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • In this captivating presentation, Michael Pawlyn, the pioneering architect and founder of Exploration Architecture, invites the audience to explore the revolutionary world of regenerative design—a paradigm shift that transcends conventional sustainability. Michael delves into the profound concept of biomimicry, a discipline that learns from nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies. He shares how the structures and processes of organisms have resolved many of the engineering and environmental challenges facing the modern world, offering innovative solutions that are not just sustainable but restorative.

    Drawing from his work on groundbreaking projects like the Eden Project and the Sahara Forest Project, Michael illustrates how regenerative design can create resilient communities, restore ecosystems, generate clean energy, and even remove carbon from the atmosphere. His unique insights into biophilia—the idea that human beings thrive when in contact with nature—provide a compelling case for rethinking how we design our buildings, cities, and communities. Michael also takes the audience on a journey through the circular economy, an economic system aimed at eliminating waste through the continuous use of resources. He emphasizes how we can learn from biological systems to create a world where waste becomes food for another process.

energizing the future: clean energy and sustainable architecture

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • The integration of renewable energy into architectural design is more than an innovative trend; it’s a necessary step towards a sustainable future. Michael Pawlyn, a leading figure in regenerative design and sustainable architecture, has devoted his career to exploring and implementing these principles. He offers a comprehensive overview of how renewable energy can be harnessed within architectural design. He will delve into examples of ultra-efficient buildings that not only minimize energy consumption but actively contribute to energy generation through solar, wind, geothermal, and other renewable sources. Pawlyn’s work exemplifies how architecture can transition from being a part of the energy problem to a critical component of the solution. By looking at nature’s wisdom and applying biomimicry principles, his designs manage to create buildings that are both aesthetically pleasing and functionally brilliant.

    This presentation will not only discuss the technical aspects of integrating clean energy into building design but also explore the broader implications for urban planning, community building, and global sustainability. It will challenge the audience to rethink conventional design methods and inspire a new generation of architects, designers, and planners to embrace clean energy as an integral part of our built environment. Michael Pawlyn provides a a roadmap to a resilient and prosperous future, where architecture plays a pivotal role in transforming our energy landscape. The insights shared by Michael Pawlyn will serve as valuable guidance for professionals, policymakers, and anyone passionate about the intersection of design, technology, and sustainability.

the urban oasis: green cities and the future of living spaces

  • Virtual PresentationKeynote PresentationWorkshop SessionHalf Day TrainingFull Day Training
  • The concept of a city as a living, breathing ecosystem is a vision that transcends traditional urban planning. It’s about transforming concrete jungles into Urban Oases where nature and human activity thrive in harmony. Michael Pawlyn, renowned for his pioneering work in regenerative design and biomimicry, stands at the forefront of this transformative approach to urban development. Pawlyn will explore how cities can evolve into vibrant and sustainable habitats. He will delve into the principles of green infrastructure, emphasizing the integration of parks, gardens, green roofs, and water features within urban environments. These elements not only enhance the aesthetics of a city but also contribute to improved air quality, biodiversity, and overall well-being.

    But it’s not just about adding green spaces; it’s about rethinking the entire fabric of our urban areas. Pawlyn will examine innovative urban planning strategies that prioritize pedestrian-friendly streets, efficient public transportation, and mixed-use development. He will also discuss how community engagement and collaboration are crucial in creating cities that reflect the needs and values of their residents.

    Drawing on his extensive experience with projects like the Sahara Forest Project and his work with Exploration Architecture, Pawlyn will offer practical insights and real-world examples of cities that are on the path to becoming Urban Oases. He will also highlight the role of technology, policy, and leadership in achieving this vision. This presentation will inspire anyone interested in the future of urban living to embrace a new paradigm where cities become nurturing habitats that enrich both human life and the natural world around them. It’s a vision for a future where urban spaces are not just places to live and work, but thriving ecosystems that celebrate the symbiotic relationship between humanity and nature.


One of the finest talks I’ve ever seen on nature and design  

Amory Lovins

Chairman and Chief Scientist
Rocky Mountain Institute

I have just watched the talk that Michael Pawlyn gave for TED and thought it was one of the most amazing and interesting things I have ever heard about. Thank you for thinking outside of the box

Hanna Sankowska

Your talk was a tremendous inspiration to all and the response has been fantastic. Personally it was the best presentation I have ever experienced -thank you Michael

Torben Thyregod Jensen


Michael was fantastic! The audience absolutely loved his lecture. Couldn’t have been a better way to launch the series.

Colleen McLaughlin

Natural History Museum of Utah

Articles & Media

Financial Times




Flourish: Design Paradigms for Our Planetary Emergency
Flourish: Design Paradigms for Our Planetary Emergency
Biomimicry in Architecture Paperback
Biomimicry in Architecture Paperback
How to book Michael Pawlyn for an event?

Michael Pawlyn keynote speaker is an expert presenter and has a wide range of experience speaking to a wide variety of audiences and organizations. Michael Pawlyn delivers keynotes, workshops & training sessions. They may also host or emcee events. Hire Michael Pawlyn from Toronto, Ontario for your event to inspire the audience to take action and make change in their work and their lives. Your workplace will benefit from our keynote speaker and their keynote talks and speeches will shift the mindsets or behaviours for the audience members in Canada. 

Interested in booking Michael Pawlyn for an event?

Are you looking to hire Michael Pawlyn for your event? Michael Pawlyn Toronto, Ontario is a dynamic and engaging speaker that offers audiences researched content paired with expertise and a dynamic speaking ability. Michael Pawlyn is also a Canadian corporate consultant and coach and facilitates workshops and training sessions for a corporate audience. Michael Pawlyn is an expert keynote presenter and speaks on wide variety of topics. Hiring a great speaker for your event is important and working with a thought leader like Michael Pawlyn from Speakers Canada’s roster will engage audiences into the content of the presentation to bring awareness and a fresh perspective for their approach to their work and their lives. Book Michael Pawlyn to educate, motivate and activate the audience through an interactive and entertaining presentation at corporate meetings and gatherings.

Known as a popular key note speaker in Canada, Michael Pawlyn creates life changing experiences for the participants with practical insights and strategic advice they can implement right after the session. Working with a one our leading expert speaker like Michael Pawlyn from Toronto, Ontario offers organizations a fresh perspective to assist the people of the organization. No matter if it is a government, association, or business crowd, Michael Pawlyn is a perfect speaker for your event. Through unique practical insights for trending topics and years experience speaking to different organizations, Michael Pawlyn focuses on changing individuals to make better decisions at work and their lives. No matter if you are holding an in person or virtual event, having an influential speaker such as Michael Pawlyn will engage, motivate, and activate the audience to make a change in their lives and inspire action for results to meet organizational goals. Your workforce will benefit from Michael Pawlyn’s presentations and speeches, with measurable results set to shift the people of the organization and core direction of the company. Book Michael Pawlyn speaker for your annual general meeting, conference, summit, or convention in Canada.

How much does it cost to hire Michael Pawlyn for a keynote presentation or virtual event?

Michael Pawlyn is an expert professional key note speaker with a lot of experience speaking and delivering engaging talks to organizations and audiences in Canada. Each of Speaker Bureau Canada’s talent have different ways to assess their fees, and Michael Pawlyn speaker fee ranges depending on the size of the audience, event format (in person or virtual), event location, and if the organization booking them is a non profit, association, government department/government agency or business/corporation. The speakers we work with are flexible with their fees, and it is important for us to learn more about your event before we approach them, as it is our role to work for you, and to help you find a speaker within budget. 

Please contact Speakers Bureau of Canada and provide us with your event details so that we can contact Michael Pawlyn to check availability or confirm the pricing and associated costs to hire a great speaker like Michael Pawlyn for your event. As Michael Pawlyn's agent and as a Canadian top speaker bureau and talent agency for speakers, we are able to propose each event opportunity from each host organization’s behalf to try to help you get in touch with Michael Pawlyn and confirm them for your in person or online meeting/event. We can also provide and advise on the booking process and potentially negotiate their fee. Speakers Canada is a client focused speaker agency, and we work for you in finding good speakers for your team meetings and booking processes.

Michael Pawlyn Disclaimer
Speakers Bureau Canada assists companies and event planning teams seeking to hire talent like Michael Pawlyn for speaking engagements, virtual meetings, conference appearances, training sessions and workshops facilitations. Our Canadian speakers bureau does not claim to exclusively represent Michael Pawlyn, however they are represented by Speakers Canada, and we work with them closely for their Canadian speaking opportunities and bookings. As Canada’s top speaker bureau, we represent Canadian motivational keynote speakers and professional guest speakers that will be available on your upcoming events date and location that are withing the budget. Our talented bureau speaker booking agency can help find business speakers or celebrity speakers that aligns with each organization, audience, event theme and the topic themes you hope for the speaker to address in their presentation. 

When SBC receives a request to book Michael Pawlyn we provide you with their speaker fees, travel costs and check their schedules. We work closely with the host organization’s event planning team and the speaker to handle the logistics and to relay or negotiate associated costs. Our talented team members then will work with our talent directly or their agent/manager/assistant to confirm the Canadian speaker fee and travel expenses, so that event planning teams can receive an official quote for the speaker appearing at the event. Speaker fees and travel costs vary per speaker and our role is to contact Michael Pawlyn about your event, after we have connected with the event organizers to learn all the event details and/or conference program. Each booking request is unique since session durations and audience sizes can vary which may affect the speaker’s fees. If you are looking to hire Michael Pawlyn, we recommend filling out the booking request form so a booking agent from Speakers Bureau Canada can get in touch with our talent to help you coordinate with your team to engage the speaker for a successful event.

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