The institute

The Team

François Briant

President-Founder and advisor in biomimicry

Passionate about innovative physical and digital design for a sustainable planet, François lives in French Polynesia.

He assists companies and institutions in their innovation and transformation strategies. After working for an American company (IBM) for more than 30 years, he decided to refocus his time and energy on innovation inspired by nature. He discovered biomimicry, an approach using nature as a source of inspiration, for breakthrough innovations, respectful of the environment by design. François launched the first Polynesian Biomimicry network, developing awareness and training in innovation and design inspired by Nature.

Engineer in physics and computer science (“Ecole Centrale Marseille - France”), François is passionate about IT and innovation. He worked for IBM as an IT architect, where he led numerous transformations for international clients, and actively contributed to the success of the IBM Smarter Cities strategy. He has developed collaborative research projects between IBM and French universities, as well as innovative architectures for the management of smart cities (renewable energies - Montpellier Smarter City project). Named IBM “Distinguished Engineer”, he held technical and scientific management positions for more than 10 years. His main talent is to develop innovative visions, and projects to transform the company, institutions or ecosystems. 

Frédéric Thibur

Vice-President, secretary and director of the training committee

Graduated from the Institute of Business Administration (IAE) of Montpellier in technical-commercial higher education, Frédéric held the position of market manager for a large industrial group specializing in the design and manufacture of complex geotextile products intended for public works.

His passion for training and his reflexions about the meaning of life, led him to leave everything to go and settle in French Polynesia with his wife and two children. His didactic approach to scuba diving positions empathy as a major vector of technical learning, upsetting the practices usually applied.

A PADI Course Director, and trainer of instructors in several other international organizations, Frédéric is now Director of Training at Eleuthera Plongée. His training strategy, where interpersonal skills strongly influence the acquisition of skills, has raised Eleuthera Plongée as a benchmark training organization in scuba diving in French Polynesia.

Fascinated by the ability of nature to respond to the challenges of modern societies, his meeting with François Briant was decisive in the creation of the Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme and its missions: Frédéric cultivates a personal approach to biomimicry, replacing the human at the heart of its natural ecosystem, promoting awareness and engagement in a multi-vector bio-inspired approach: organization, sociology, conception & design, personal development, … 

Laëtitia Hedouin

Vice-President, Advisor and Director of the Scientific Committee

Chargée de recherche au CNRS, dans les domaines d'écotoxicologie tropicale, ainsi que de biologie et reproduction des coraux, Laetitia exerce au CRIOBE (Centre de Recherches Insulaires et Observatoire de l'Environnement) depuis 2010. Elle a obtenu sa thèse à l’université de la Rochelle ("Caractérisation d’espèces bio-indicatrices pour surveiller le degré de contamination métallique du lagon de Nouvelle Calédonie"), puis a rejoint le laboratoire du Dr RD Gates à l’Institut de Biologie Marine d’Hawaii (Etude des effets des contaminations terrigènes sur les coraux adultes et les jeunes stades de vie). 

Affectée au laboratoire du CRIOBE depuis 2010, Laetitia focalise ses recherches sur les effets des stress sur le cycle de vie des coraux, avec un intérêt tout particulier pour la réponse des jeunes stades de vie aux stress naturels et anthropiques. Elle assure la coordination du programme scientifique DeepHope mené en collaboration avec "Under The Pole" dans le cadre de l’expédition UTP III, qui vise à une meilleure compréhension des populations coralliennes en milieu mésophotique.  

Co-fondatrice de l'Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme (IPB), suite à sa rencontre avec François Briant, Laetitia en est la Vice-Présidente Recherche; elle est à l'origine du premier projet de l'IPB ("Développement d'une nouvelle architecture bio-inspirée de nurseries coralliennes"). Elle assure la direction du Conseil Scientifique, en charge de la définition de la stratégie Scientifique de l'IPB. Passionnée de sciences et d'écologie, Laetitia considère le biomimétisme comme un moyen de contribuer activement au développement d'innovations bio-inspirées et à la régénération de nos écosystèmes.

Marie-Charlotte Ropert

Project and communication manager

Valedictorian (2006) of the Burgundy School of Business, Dijon, it is after 13 years in Investment and International Financing (Paris, Singapore, Hong Kong), that Marie-Charlotte decides, already very inspired by the beauty and richness of the underwater world, to follow a new path and engage in a professional reorientation in the industry of diving and underwater photography.

An experience traveler, after several visits to French Polynesia, it is therefore naturally in Tahiti that she decides to settle down.

Marie-Charlotte puts her experience in project management, business development, customer relations but also as a diver, naturalist and artist, at the service of causes that are dear to her heart : awareness of environmental issues, in particular conservation and protection of marine life and environment.

Today, in addition to her endeavours as a diving instructor and photographer, it is in particular through the Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme that she defends her convictions by being particularly involved in the development and influence of the Institute. since 2018. 


Design department manager

Born in French Polynesia, Alizée left the Pacific Islands to devote herself to her passion for design. Graduated from the Master "Design of the transition" of EESAB Brest (2017), she has always kept a deep attachment for Polynesian nature, terrestrial and marine, and its fascinating biodiversity.

Today a self-employed designer, she attaches real importance to working on projects related to the environment, the energy and ecological transition, topical subjects that are in great need to be promoted. During her studies, she notably worked on a concept of "Urban Reef" aiming to draw inspiration from coral reefs and their ecosystems in the infrastructures and societal organizations of the cities of tomorrow.

It is therefore quite natural that Alizée joined the Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme, to defend the convictions that she shares with her community. She has been active since its creation in 2017 and works on design issues associated with her various projects and events. It also contributes to the influence of the Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme in the metropolis where she resides. 

Antoine PUISAY


Doctor of Biology (PSL - University Paris) and specialized in coral ecosystems, Antoine spent 4 years in French Polynesia in order to carry out his doctoral research on the effects of environmental changes on corals and the means of restoration and conservation faced with a changing world. Antoine now lives in mainland France.

Passionate about Nature, curious about his functions, observer of his innovations and with a strong desire for education and knowledge sharing, Antoine has also accompanied associations such as the Vairao Surf Club, Te Mana O Te Moana and professionals like Pacifik attitude, in their process of awareness, conservation and restoration of coral reefs in French Polynesia.

Participating to the creation of the first biomimicry network in French Polynesia thanks to his meeting with François Briant during doctoral studies at the University of French Polynesia in 2017, Antoine is now looking to develop further the Institut Polynésien de Biomimétisme thanks to innovative means for the observation of biomimetic functions with public and private institutions.