Zafeirios Fountas

Research scientist @ Emotech, research associate @ UCL, visiting lecturer @ RCA


I am a researcher with strong passion for neuroscience, biologically-inspired artificial intelligence and robotics. I currently work both at Emotech and the Wellcome Centre for Human Neuroimaging in UCL. I recently left (after 8 years) from department of Computing of Imperial College London where I was mainly working with Prof. Murray Shanahan (and some other amazing people) and, at some point, as the principal investigator of the six-partner EU project TimeStorm. I received my PhD in computational neuroscience under the supervision of Prof. Shanahan, where I investigated the relation between brain oscillations, our ability to select actions and Parkinsonian tremor. In this website I share some information about my work, my interests and my thoughts. If you find anything interesting, feel free to drop me a line :)

My research

A general theme of my work has been to investigate how human-like aspects of cognition can emerge from computational models and test hypotheses via software or physical embodied agents (such as neuromorphic robots). I've worked on both bottom-up models (e.g. spiking neural networks), top-down models, or the combination of the two (e.g. the robot Olly). Some cognitive abilities of the brain that have been bothering me, include the brain's ability to:

  • select between different salient actions (with emphasis on cortical oscillations and the basal ganglia),
  • perceive time,
  • remember particular events (episodes) and use them to learn the world,
  • globally access and process information concurrently,
  • simulate potential future scenarios and generate predictions to drive decisions,
  • implement Bayesian inference via predictive coding.

In my PhD, I focused on how action selection occurs in the brain, when the latter is viewed as an oscillatory dynamical system, how important are the dynamics of individual neurons for this purpose, as opposed to those of neural circuits, as well as how the action selection mechanism of the brain might be responsible for the basic motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease, such as the resting tremor.

Teaching and talks

2019 IDE Module - GIZMO (AI+ML) - Dyson School of Design Engineering, Imperial College London

  • Lecture 1 (28/2/2019) Non-neural ML: For the slides see google drive.
  • Lecture 2 (5/3/2019) Neural networks and brain-inspired AI: For the slides press here.

2018 IDE Module - Computational Intelligence in the Wild Lecture 3 (17/04/2018) - Dyson School of Design Engineering, Imperial College London.
For the slides click here.

2017 "Imitating human behaviour with brain-inspired artificial intelligence" Talk in the Royal College of Art with Dr. Anastasia Sylaidi. For the slides press here.

Software tools

  • Brain Studio: A suite of simulation tools for large-scale spiking neural networks including NeMo simulator.

© Zafeirios Fountas This is just a joke. As a kid, I always wanted to have copyright material with my name but you can obviously copy anything you like from the sourcecode of this website (only sourcecode not the content) without my permisison :-)
Last Update on June 20 2019. Number of visits: 7375