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Robert Gowers

As of January 2020 I became a postdoc at the Institute for Theoretical Biology at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, for which my webpage is:

PhD Research:

Linking neuronal microcircuit dysfunction to disease

Supervisor: Magnus Richardson

Co-Supervisor: Yulia Timofeeva

Following the progress made on modelling stochastic synaptic drive on a dendrite, I have expanded this model to include a soma, multiple dendrites, and an axon. My research involves looking at how the spatial structure and differences in membrane properties between regions filters synaptic input and affects the dynamic response of neuronal firing.

With a representative pyramidal cell model, one can build small networks of pyramidal cells and interneurons ("microcircuits"). These microcircuits can generate complex patterns of behaviour which are useful for understanding various neuropathologies, such as epilepsy.

Conferences and Workshops:

British Neuroscience Association, Festival of Neuroscience, 2017

Participant in the 2017 Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Computational Neuroscience Course (OCNC 2017), where I used NEST to investigate the effect of bidirectional connections on network behaviour.

Attended JuliaCon 2018 and presented a poster on how I use Julia in computational neuroscience.

Presented posters at:

SfN 2018 in San Diego

UK Neural Computation 2019


Bernstein Conference 2019

MSc Year:

Individual project:

Correlations and firing rates of pyramidal neuron dendrites

(PDF Document)Project Report

Supervisor: Magnus Richardson

Co-Supervisor: Yulia Timofeeva

Group Project:

Convex optimisation in communications systems

External partner: BT, Keith Briggs

Group convenor: Samuel Johnson

In this project, we used the cvxpy package for Python in order to solve convex optimisation problems. Some of our examples can be found on the cvxpy website here. Magazine article that appeared in Mathematics Today here.


Supervisor for first year Maths/Stats and MORSE students (2016-2017). Modules covered include MA106, MA133, MA134, MA137.

Teaching assistant for MA4G4, Introduction to Theoretical Neuroscience (2016).

Introduction to Computing for MathSys (2017,2018).

Lab Demonstrator for CS132, Computer Organisation and Architecture (2018).


I received my MEng from the University of Cambridge in July 2014, with my focus being in Electrical Engineering.

Areas of research I have previously been involved with include:

i) Flexible thin film transistors.

ii) Inkjet printing of liquid crystals.

iii) Resistive memory.


Theoretical Neuroscience

Low-rate firing limit for neurons with axon, soma and dendrites driven by spatially distributed stochastic synapses, Gowers, R. P., Timofeeva, Y., Richardson, M. J. E. PLOS Computational Biology (2020) Link

Convex Optimisation

Communicating with convexity, Gowers, R. P., Al-Izzi, S. C., Pollington, T., Hill, R. J. W., and Briggs, K. Mathematics Today, 54, no.4 (August) 168-171 (2018)

Electronic Materials

Switching kinetics of SiC resistive memory for harsh environments, Morgan, K. A., Fan, J., Huang, R., Zhong, L., Gowers, R. P., Jiang, L. and de Groot, C. H., AIP Advances, 5, 077121 (2015)

High Voltage Organic Thin Film Transistors on Flexible and Curved Surfaces, Smith, M. A., Gowers, R. P., Shih, A., Akinwande, I. A., IEEE Transactions on Electron Devices, 62, 12 (2015)

SPICE Compact Modeling of Bipolar/Unipolar RRAM Switching Governed by Electrical Thresholds, Garcia-Redondo, F., Gowers, R. P., Crespo-Yepes, A., López-Vallejo, M. and Jiang, L, IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems I Regular Papers 1-10 (2016)

Microstructure and electrical properties of co-sputtered Cu embedded amorphous SiC, Fan, J., Jiang, L., Zhong, L., Gowers, R. P., Morgan, K. A., & De Groot, C. H., Materials Letters, 178, 60-63. (2016)

Switching mechanisms of Cu/SiC resistive memories with W and Au counter electrodes, Morgan, K. A., Fan, J., Gowers, R. P., Jiang, L. and de Groot, C. H., Device Research Conference (DRC), 2016 74th Annual


Volunteer coach at the Coventry Chess Academy.

Occasionally represents the University of Warwick in the Coventry and District Chess League and in the British Universities' Chess Association Championship.

Former president of the Cambridge University Diplomacy Society.

Picture of Self


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