Thierry Dutoit is a research director at the CNRS within the Institut Méditerranéen de Biodiversité et Ecologie (IMBE), of which he is deputy director. His research focuses on coexistence processes and assembly rules in Mediterranean herbaceous plant communities.

Thierry Dutoit is particularly interested in the impacts of anthropogenic disturbances over the very long term via approaches that combine paleoecology and historical ecology. The results of his work are applied to ecological restoration or ecosystem rehabilitation, particularly via bio-inspiration, which involves the management of certain key species known as "ecosystem engineers", from bacteria to large herbivores.

Website(s) :

Detailed bio

Mediterranean Institute of Biodiversity and Marine and Continental Ecology (IMBE)

Contribution to Biomim'week 2020 :

Restoring nature: an ant's work!

In August 2009, a ruptured oil pipeline in the Crau plain in the Bouches-du-Rhône department caused hydrocarbon pollution in the heart of a national nature reserve. There, for the first time in the world, we experimented with the transplantation of harvester ant founding queens to accelerate the restoration of the soil and vegetation on the land that had been rehabilitated. Eight years later, our results show that this operation has really made it possible to increase soil fertility and accelerate the return of the steppe-like vegetation, unique in the world, which pre-existed where ant nests are present, thus making it possible to validate this bio-inspired process on an operational ecological engineering scale.

Useful resources and links :

Videos :

  • Report in the series Nature=Future / "Agronomic ants" / December 2019 /

Radio :

Television :

Colloquia :




The artificial coloniser in the deep environment.
An underwater nursery that will be immersed in the Mediterranean Sea by the Ifremer Nautile in spring 2020.
A collective project, supported by :
  • Christian Tamburini, M I OHDR CNRS, scientific project leader
  • Jacques Rougerie, Jacques Rougerie Foundation
  • Olivier Bocquet, Tangram Architects and Tangram Lab
  • TREEX and the Jacques Rougerie Foundation have produced the design of the colonizer
  • Guillaume Terrasse, VICAT
  • and Amaury Thomas, SOLIQUID, for 3D printing

Presentation at Biomim'expo 2019:



The Ceramic Synthesis and Functionalization Laboratory is a joint CNRS / Saint-Gobain research unit, doing fundamental research on functional ceramic materials, in particular ceramic materials having charge transfer properties. More specifically, we study how the combination of functional properties can lead to innovative materials.
We focus on three scientific topics:
  • Control the hierarchic porosity in the materials
  • Control the microstructure of ceramic materials at the grain scale in order to optimise their functional properties (including ionic conductivity)
  • Understand the interaction of the surface of ion-conducting materials with gaseous reactive species

The board Biomim'review

Sylvain Deville's presentation at Biomim'expo 2016 : (à 28:00)

Publications : here


Contact: here


MYCOPHYTO was co-founded in 2017 by Justine LIPUMA, a doctor in microbiology, and Christine PONCET, an agricultural engineer. Spin off INRAE (INRA) and UCA (Université Côte d'Azur), it has received more than 12 awards since its creation.

MYCOPHYTO is to develop, produce and propose to agricultural professionals effective biological solutions by adapting scientific knowledge concerning mycorrhizal symbiosis.

MYCOPHYTO, an INRAE and UCA spin-off, integrates the latest knowledge from life sciences and technological innovations. The start-up has patented solutions for the implementation of native arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMFs) in crops to recreate sustainable natural synergies with plant roots.

MYCOPHYTO is based on a dynamic of key players including: world-renowned scientists, joint research structures, technical and training institutes and farmer ambassadors.

Videos :

Other releases :

LA TRIBUNE / 18 MAR 2020 / Mycophyto, the proof-of-concept deeptech

BPI FRANCE / 19 NOV 2019 / Mycophyto: Agriculture transformed by science

HORIZONS / 17 DEC 2019 / Mycophyto, the natural alternative to pesticides that increases yields

CREDIT AGRICOLE INFO / 21 OCT 2019 / Mycophyto, a natural and tailor-made alternative to chemical inputs

FRENCH WEB / 25 SEP 2019 / Startup Mycophyto raises €1.4 million to offer an organic alternative to pesticides



Justine LIPUMA, Co-Founder & CEO
540 avenue de la Plaine
06250 Mougins


The Institut des Sciences du Mouvement Etienne-Jules Marey is a Joint Research Unit (UMR 7287), associating Aix-Marseille University and the CNRS through the Institute of Biological Sciences (INSB), the main institute, and three secondary institutes: the Institute of Engineering and Systems Sciences (INSIS); the Institute of Computer Sciences and their Interactions (INS2I) and the Institute of Human and Social Sciences (INSHS).

The institute is located on several sites of Aix-Marseille University, the Luminy campus, the Sainte-Marguerite Hospital, the Timone Hospital, and the IUT site of Aix-en-Provence


The Institute's research themes focus on the mechanical, physiological, neurological, psychological and sociological determinants of the motor skills of living beings, particularly humans.

The Institute's project is to develop interdisciplinarity for the study of Movement, in order to work at the frontiers of disciplinary fields.

Research teams :

Intervention by Stéphane Viollet and Antoine Wystrach at Biomim'expo 2019 to present the robot AntBot :

The portrait page in the Biomim'BOOK 2019 :

Sources / contacts :

UMR 7287 CNRS & Aix-Marseille University
Faculty of Sport Sciences, CP 910
163, av. de Luminy F-13288 Marseille cedex 09 (FRANCE)
Telephone: +33 (0)491 17 22 55
Fax: +33 (0)491 17 22 52
E-mail :



ANTBOT - geolocation without GPS

Her name is Cataglyphis and she's great. She is a desert ant, a navigator who moves without GPS, thanks to a celestial compass because she can "read" light!

Researchers have deciphered its secret and even used it as a bio-inspired tool to develop the AntBot robot, a revolution in future navigation strategies.

Discover this fantastic story inspired by the living with Stéphane Viollet, Director of Research at CNRS, Institut des Sciences du Mouvement (ISM-UMR7287) Aix Marseille University, and Antoine Wystrach, Research Fellow at the CNRS, Animal Cognition Research Centre in Toulouse (CNRS) Université Paul Sabatier Toulouse III), told at Biomim'expo 2019.

Other videos :

Sources / contacts :

CNRS researcher l Stéphane Viollet // T +33 4 91 82 83 68 // +33 6 34 14 15 94 //
Press CNRS l Priscilla Dacher // T +33 1 44 96 46 06 //

Other releases :

The CNRS press release: The first legged robot that moves without GPS

Science Robotics : AntBot: A six-legged walking robot able to home like desert ants in outdoor environments

Futura Sciences : Meet Antbot, an ant-inspired robot that moves without GPS

Engineering techniques : AntBot: a robot that orientates itself like an ant - Applications to visual navigation without GPS or magnetometer

Rfi : AntBot, ant robot without GPS

The World : AntBot, an autonomous robot inspired by desert ants



Pure Ocean is an endowment fund based in Marseille whose main mission is to support innovative research projects contributing to the protection of fragile marine ecosystems and biodiversity. In addition to funding research projects, Pure Ocean organises conferences and promotes races and sporting challenges to raise awareness of the critical situation of the Ocean.

Missions :

Pure Ocean's mission is to support applied research projects at the cutting edge of innovation in order to  preserve the marine biodiversity, protect and restoring fragile marine ecosystems and increase knowledge about the oceans and contribute to the fight against global warmingThe projects, led by structures of general interest, are selected by our Scientific Committee, which brings together the leading international experts on these subjects.

  • Support innovative projects to better understand and protect marine biodiversity.
  • Organise media events for the general public to raise awareness of the situation of fragile marine ecosystems
  • Promote exchanges between ocean experts, researchers, companies and anyone interested in protecting the ocean

More on the website


Thomas de Williencourt, Director, (+33) 6 47 86 08 01

Stephanie LERNERCommunication Manager, (+33) 06 85 80 21 78,


Tangram is an architecture, urban planning and landscape agency, founded in 2009, bringing together 80 people of 15 different nationalities. Since November 2018, the agency has moved into the former headquarters of the Maritime Affairs Department located in the République district, in the Euroméditerranée sector, in the heart of Marseille.

The name of the agency is inspired by the game of Tangram, which is made up of elementary geometric shapes whose patient assembly and complementarity make sense by creating an infinite number of combinations.

The team is made up of seven divisions working closely together: Urban Planning, Landscape & Public Space, Housing, Hotel & Public Facilities, Tertiary & Industrial, Interior Architecture and Construction.

Three transversal specialities in Research & Innovation, BIM management and Timber architecture complete the team to ensure a constant progression of achievements.
The diversity of employees and professions, the culture and sensitivity of each, and the cross-views on common subjects allow the concepts to be strengthened in the service of the project.

The agency's projects are based on a detailed analysis of the geographical, historical, social, urban, cultural and economic complexities in order to achieve accurate projects that are anchored in their site. Because these studies are useful to the people who form and animate a territory, the agency places the cursor in the service of the quality of life and the general interest.
This commitment is expressed, in the agency's practice, through generosity, in order to design a meaningful living environment that respects people and territories.

Olivier Bocquet, director of Tangram Lab, received on Thursday 18 January 2018, the Jury's Favourite Award in the Innovation and Architecture for the Sea category of the Rougerie Foundation's international competition for its BiolumReef project.

The BiolumReef project, an eco-green inhabited reef, was designed in response to the weakening of the marine ecology of the Frioul Islands, an archipelago located in the Calanques National Park and the geographical epicentre of Marseilles, the world capital of the underwater world, which is currently threatened by a number of negative phenomena: various types of waste, uprooting of posidonia meadows, erosion of the coastline, multiple forms of pollution, etc.

To combat this fragility, BiolumReef offers a biomimetic response with a threefold objective: to preserve and spread marine biodiversity, to provide a place for exchange and to set up an eco-green cycle.

Olivier Bocquet's presentation at Biomim'expo 2019
Speech by Jacques Rougerie at the Biomim'expo 2018
Olivier Bocquet's speech at the Biomim'expo digital week 2020

The portrait page in the Biomim'BOOK 2021 :



Olivier Bocquet, Architect

about the Biomim'City Lab :

The Biomim'City Lab is a working and prospective group led by a college of experts aiming to promote and intensify innovative collaborative approaches applying the principles and methodologies of biomimicry, in the service of the reinvention of virtuous, regenerative and resilient cities, inspired and designed by and for living things.


The presentation

The manifesto