Zachary Mainen is a neuroscientist exploring neural mechanisms of decision-making. After psychology and philosophy (Yale) and a doctorate in Neuroscience (UCSD), Mainen joined as faculty at CSHL. In 2007, Mainen founded the Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, in Lisbon, Portugal, which he directed until 2015, progressing to co-Director of Champalimaud Research. His work has been recognized by two Advanced Investigator Grants from ERC (2010, 2015) and the election to EMBO. Mainen’s research analyses brain function using theory-driven experimental approaches, such as electrophysiological, optical and genetic techniques to study neural representation and computation. His work also considers causality, free will, knowledge and belief.
Mainen is also a devotee of electronic music and loves playing with light and sound, DJing, and especially dancing.