Regenerative Tech (rT)
January 30th, 2023

Regenerative means able to or tending to regenerate—to regrow or be renewed or restored, especially after being damaged or lost.

Regenerative - re·gen·er·a·tive /rēˈjenərədiv/

What’s interesting is the very word ‘regenerative’ implies loss and damage. In order to regenerate, something must have happened to cause the need in the first place. In natural terms, that means something died or became obtusely deficient.

Let’s start with agriculture.

Humans have been practicing agriculture for over 10,000 years. In fact, methods such as fire-stick farming and forest gardening are two early examples of altering flora and fauna for human benefit. Founder crops such as wheat, barley, peas, lentils, and flax were the first to appear. The technology of the day included irrigation canals, seed ploughs, drying, salting, and smoking. This innovation allowed humans to control the outcome of the process - something the gods previously controlled.

As a result of these advances in agriculture, civilization grew. Increased population meant better access to labor, more crops, and more innovation ultimately resulting in more prosperity. Markets were born. Trade and currency were established. Work was born.

So agriculture fed innovation which resulted in technology that produced a surplus of (crop, product, service) for civilization.

More input = more output.


Without going into the hole of then to now, let’s just recognize industrialization has happened since Sumer and Mesopotamia. Specific to agriculture, industrialization has been linked to:

  • Soil, water, and air pollution

  • Diminishing biodiversity among plants and animals

  • The quickened pace of soil erosion

  • Unsustainable rates of water consumption in many agricultural areas

  • Development of chronic diseases, cancers, and foodborne pathogens due to animal-based foods, pesticides, and concentrated high-speed meat production

  • Resistance to antibiotics due to excessive use of antibiotics in animal agriculture

  • Lack of nutritional value in foods - and more (Source)

In short - we’re taking more than we’re giving back and that has massive impacts on balance, preservation, and the future of sustainability. This is a central theme to the Retreat at Firefly Farm and why we feel it’s so important to relate regenerative agriculture to the future of work and education. The current system is simply not sustainable. In fact, it’s barely being taught in schools.

So what is Regenerative Tech (rT)?

If we substitute the definition of regenerative agriculture for regenerative tech and add a dash of the modern workplace, it might look something like this:

Regenerative Tech (rT) is a holistic approach to technology that focuses on the interconnection of computing systems and the ecological system as a whole. Along with the incorporation of assistive technology, (rT) identifies and corrects digital hegemony, restores interoperability, and reduces the interdependency on disparate applications. It allows human interaction to focus on innovation and creativity while autonomously carrying out digital tasks and workflows. In short, rT gives back more than it takes.

If we did this agriculturally, some benefits might be:

  • Minimized soil disturbances (no-till)

  • Maximized soil coverage / organic matter

  • Increased plant/animal diversity

  • Living roots

  • Better crop nutrition

  • Reduction in the dependency on GMO seed / fertilizer

  • Natural water retention

So what if we brought this whole regenerative discussion to the future of education and the future of work? What if the farmer became the ultimate source for technologists? What if we reinforced the technology model, through transverse models, with a gentle reminder that natural systems thinking might solve some pretty complex societal and technological problems?

Could the answers to these complex issues surrounding the future of school and work come from the soil below our feet? Can sustainability and regenerative design positivity impact community, education, and work and start to restore connection and personal relationships?

#TotalTenancy™ #OrionGrowth

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

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