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Image by Olivier Mary

About Permaculture

Creative Design Process based on Whole-Systems Thinking

What is it?

Permaculture is a Design system based on observing nature and developing a set of principles of humans living in harmony with nature and all that exists.

​Permaculture(Permanent Culture) is a set of design principles centred around whole systems thinking simulating or directly utilizing the patterns and resilient features observed in natural ecosystems. It uses principles in a growing number of fields from regenerative agriculture, rewilding, community, and organizational design and development. It is a worldwide movement of sustainability, productivity and regenerative landscaping.

Permaculture Principles

The foundations of permaculture are the ethics (centre) which guide the use of the 12 design principles, ensuring that they are used in appropriate ways. These principles are seen as universal, although the methods used to express them will vary greatly according to the place and situation. They are applicable to our personal, economic, social and political reorganisation as illustrated in the permaculture flower.

Each principle can be thought of as a door that opens into whole systems thinking, providing a different perspective that can be understood at varying levels of depth and application.


7 domains


The permaculture journey begins with the ethics and design principles. We apply this thinking to the seven different domains required to create a sustainable culture.


The evolutionary spiral path connects these domains, initially at a personal and local level, and then proceeds to the collective and global level.


The ethics earth care, people care and fair share form the foundation for permaculture design and are also found in most traditional societies. Ethics are culturally evolved mechanisms that regulate self-interest, giving us a better understanding of good and bad outcomes. The greater the power of humans, the more critical ethics become for long-term cultural and biological survival.

Permaculture ethics are distilled from research into community ethics, learning from cultures that have existed in relative balance with their environment for much longer than more recent civilisations. This does not mean that we should ignore the great teachings of modern times, but in the transition to a sustainable future, we need to consider values and concepts outside the current social norm. 

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