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Taryn Mead

Taryn Mead

Lecturer of Sustainable Product Design


Ph.D., University of Exeter, Management, 2017
B.A., Western Colorado University, Environmental Science; Environment and Sustainability, 2006


Taryn Mead is a sustainability, innovation and management scholar whose research focuses on the interface between corporate strategies and socio-ecological systems. This includes subjects such as systems of production and consumptions, sustainability-oriented innovation, circular economy, biomimicry, and the role of corporations in sustainable development. In her role as Product Track Coordinator for the Outdoor Industry MBA, she supports students in developing their product-related Capstone projects, and providing guidance in product strategy, new product development, and supply chain management. She also has expertise in creativity for sustainability among business, design and engineering professionals in interdisciplinary settings. Before pursuing her Ph.D., Taryn worked as design consultant, sustainability strategist and certified biomimicry professional consulting with over 30 corporate, municipal and non-profit organizations. As a practitioner of nature inspired innovation, she consulted on domestic and international projects ranging from new product design, to industrial ecosystems, to new cities for two million inhabitants. She has also served as the lead facilitator for numerous workshops with corporate clients and has lectured for large audiences.

Research Interests

  • Sustainability-oriented innovation
  • Regenerative Innovation and Supply Networks
  • The role of the private sector in sustainable development
  • Rural innovation and circular economies
  • Epistemological considerations of transdisciplinary research.

Current Projects

  • Journal publications on the influence of bioinspration on corporate sustainability strategies
  • Teaching a VentureWell grant-funded class on innovation for the circular economy in Gunnison
  • Book chapter for Responsible Management Handbook on Biomimicry as a Management Innovation
  • Research on B-Corp Certification in small companies
  • Research on regenerative innovation strategies in multinationals and rural communities

Courses Taught

  • MBA 607: Strategic MGT Business Models for the Outdoor Industry
  • MBA 609: Sustainable Outdoor Product Development and Material Sourcing
  • MBA 610: Supply Chain and Logistics in the Outdoor Industry
  • BUAD 363: Business and the Environment
  • BUAD/ENVS/SCI/HNRS 397: Science-Driven Innovation for the Circular Economy
  • ENVS 616: Environmental Organizational Development and Management
  • ENVS 623: Nature-Inspired Innovation and Design
  • ENVS 301: Science of Sustainability and Resilience
  • HNRS 397: Biomimicry Global Design Challenge


  • Mead, T.L., Jeanrenaud, S., and J. Bessant. (2020). Factors influencing the application of nature as inspiration for sustainability-oriented innovation in multinational corporations. Business Strategy and the Environment. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/bse.2564
  • Mead, T.L., Jeanrenaud, S., and J. Bessant. (2020). Sustainability Oriented Innovation Narratives: Learning from Nature Inspired Innovation. (In review)
  • Mead, T., Borden, D.S., and D. Coley (Submitted 2020) Navigating the Tower of Babel: The Epistemological Shift of Biophronesis. (Pending publication)
  • Mead, T. & Landrum, N. (2019) “Bioinspiration as a Guide for Responsible Management” in Laasch, O., Jamali, D., Freeman, E., & Suddaby, R. The Research Handbook of Responsible Management. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
  • Mead, T. (2018). Bioinspiration in Business and Management: Innovating for Sustainability. Business Expert Press. http://www.businessexpertpress.com/
  • Mead, T. and Jeanrenaud, S. (2017). The Elephant in the Room: Biomimetics and Sustainability? Bioinspired, Biomimetic and Nanobiomaterials. http://www.icevirtuallibrary.com/toc/jbibn/current
  • Mead, T. (2016). Biomimicry as an Approach to Sustainability-Oriented Innovation in Multinational Corporations. (Roundtable in PDW entitled Innovating for Sustainability: The State of the Art and Beyond). Academy of Management Annual Conference (Anaheim, CA, USA).
  • Hoeller, N., Farnsworth, M., Jacobs, S., Chirazi, J., Mead, T., Goel, A., & Salustri, F. (2016). A Systems View of Bio-Inspiration: Bridging the Gaps. INSIGHT, 19(1), 36–40. http://doi.org/10.1002/inst.12071
  • Mead, T. (2016). Biomimicry As An Approach To Sustainability-Oriented Innovation In Multinational Corporations. European Meetings on Cybernetics and Systems Research. Proceedings not yet published.
  • Mead, T. (2014) Commercialization of Biomimetic Technologies. Asean and EU Science, Technology and Innovation Days: 2014 (Bangkok, Thailand). Proceedings not published.
  • Mead, T. (2014) Biologically-Inspired Management Innovations. Presented at XXV ISPIM Innovation Conference – Innovation for Sustainable Economy & Society (Dublin, Ireland). Available on Academia.edu.
  • Mead, T. (2014). Biologically-inspired innovation in large companies: A path for corporate participation in biophysical systems? International Journal of Design & Nature and Ecodynamics, 9(3) 216-29. http://www.witpress.com/elibrary/dne-volumes/9/3/876
  • Mead, T., & Hoeller, N. (2014). The ISO/TC 266 Biomimetics Standard Initiative. Zygote Quarterly, 10, 72-85, from http://issuu.com/eggermont/docs/zq_issue_10_final/72

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