Meet the Team: Zach

We’re highlighting our business’ strongest asset: our wonderful team!

Here at the Canberra Innovation Network, we’re passionate about innovation and are here to help you make an impact and change the world. Our team is full of clever, connected and creative people and we’re excited to introduce you to our Program Manager, Zachary Dowse.

Explain what you do at CBRIN in 25 words or less.
I work with high-growth potential innovation companies, helping them scale up and connect with amazing people.

Tell us about what you’re working on at the moment.
My focus at the moment is on meeting lots of entrepreneurs and people interested in innovation. I’m working with founders of start-ups through the ICON grant, Boosting Innovation Grant and GRIFFIN Accelerator. I’m also facilitating Growth Labs for start-ups and SMEs as part of our incubation services.

Who or what inspires you?
Kobe Bryant: The Mamba Mentality.

Billie-Joe Armstrong: Stay true to yourself.

Tetsuya Nomura: Beauty in creativity.

What’s your favourite book or podcast?
When Breath Becomes Air by Dr. Paul Kalanathi — I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the intersection of critical care medicine and the philosophy of life. The language in this book is probably the most beautiful of any book that describes coming to terms with life and death. Highly recommend!

What are you most passionate about?
Neuropsychology — how technology can help us solve mental health disorders. And basketball!

If you could dis-invent one thing, what would it be and why?
Plastic plants. Like … wot?

You want to purchase a non-recyclable, non-sustainable piece of décor that facades as life? Why not get a real plant? Are you unable to water it? Enjoy dusting your “plant”.

Drink of choice? 
Small double shot cappuccino in the morning, and a glass of Pepperjack shiraz at night. Or was it the other way around … I can’t remember.

What do you work towards in your free time?
I spend a lot of time playing basketball and working on my very average jump shot. I also work with a bunch of companies, do some neuroscience research and play video games.

What’s the coolest innovation you’ve read or heard about lately?
I’m super excited about the possibilities of optogenetic neuroscience. We’re able to give neural circuits a ‘light switch’, enabling behaviours to be turned on and off — imagine the possibilities for treating mental health! (In a long time, when we have the technology to control those more complex behaviours.)

What are you currently watching on Netflix?
I’m not watching anything at the moment, but I will be watching the new Lord of the Rings TV series next year!!!

Tell us something interesting about yourself that we may not know.
I’ve spent several years researching and teaching optogenetic neuroscience.

If you were a crayon, what colour would you be?
Blue (da ba dee da ba di da ba dee da ba di)

Thanks, Zach! You can connect with him on LinkedIn or online at First Wednesday Connect!