Friedemann Zenke, PhD
Principal Investigator

about and bio

Axel Laborieux, Post-doc
PhD in Neuromorphic Computing at Paris-Saclay University (FR).
I am interested in understanding the link between cortical circuit motifs and their associated functional roles for efficient information processing in spiking neural networks.

Manvi Agarwal, PhD student
MSc in Artificial Intelligence, University of Groningen (NL), and BA in History, Presidency University (IN). I’m interested in how spike-based, energy-efficient models of computation can be designed and trained to robustly produce interesting behavior.

Peter Buttaroni, MSc student
MSc in Quantitative Finance at Luiss Guido Carli (IT) and currently MSc student of AI at Università della Svizzera Italiana (CH). I am interested in Reinforcement Learning algorithms and how biological principles can be used to improve artificial neural networks.

Julia Gygax, PhD student
BSc in Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, ETHZ. Currently MSc student in Biomedical Engineering at ETHZ. I am interested in how concepts of biological neural networks can be applied to artificial neural networks and in training of spiking neural networks.

Manu Srinath Halvagal, PhD student
M.Sc, Microengineering with a minor in Computational Neuroscience, EPFL (CH) and B.Tech, Electrical Engineering, IIT Madras (IN). I am interested in the mechanisms of unsupervised and self-supervised perceptual learning in networks of biological neurons, and the role of top-down connections therein. I am also interested in exploring whether we could use these principles to improve machine learning algorithms.

Julian Rossbroich, PhD student
Joint MSc in Neuroscience from Université Laval (CA) and Université de Bordeaux (FR). My main interest concerns the neuronal signatures of learning and memory. Specifically, I am interested in how cortical circuits compute predictions of sensory inputs, and how such predictive processing is involved in learning and plasticity.

Siegfried Schwartz, Intern
Currently a BSc student in Computer Science at the Vienna University of Technology (AT). I am interested in biologically plausible learning and credit assignment and how we can use insights from neuroscience to improve machine learning algorithms.

Collaborators and external students

Benjamin Cramer, Post-doc
with Johannes Schemmel
Kirchhoff Institute of Physics, University of Heidelberg.

Sebastian Billaudelle, PhD student
with Karlheinz Meier and Johannes Schemmel
Kirchhoff Institute of Physics, University of Heidelberg.

Claire Meissner-Bernard, Post-doc
with Rainer Friedrich, FMI.

Simon Narduzzi, PhD student
co-advised co-advised by Shih-Chii Liu, Institute of Neuroinformatics (UZH/ETHZ) and L. Andrea Dunbar, CSEM.
MSc in computer science and computational neuroscience (EPFL). My research focuses on developing efficient neural networks for ultra-low power neuromorphic hardware.

Luke Taylor, PhD student
co-advised with Nicol Harper and Andy King, University of Oxford.
MSc Neuroscience (Oxford), BSc Applied Mathematics and Computer Science (UCT). I am interested in training spiking neural networks and exploring their applicability to studying the brain.


PhD students

  • Yue Kris Wu (2019-2021)
  • Tianlin Liu (2019-2020)


  • Nikolaos Papanikolaou (2022)
  • Guillermo Martin Sanchez (2022)
  • Matthias Depoortere (2020)