Dr Dimity Dornan AO has founded Human Bionics Interface, a global network of bionics thought leaders, researchers, clinicians, businesses, start-ups and investors sharing and collaborating in projects to speed up the delivery of bionics solutions to end users. She is also the founder and Chair of Bionics Queensland (BioniQ) established to accelerate the development of the human bionics industry in the state of Queensland, Australia. Her vision is for the Human Bionics Interface network to become: a globally recognised driver of human bionics research and start‐ups; opening the door to a global pipeline of R&D, translation and commercial enterprise; fast tracking new technologies, products and services and enabling millions of children and adults with previously untreatable medical conditions to lead fulfilling lives.
Dr Dornan has a national and international reputation as a leading researcher in the area of paediatric hearing impairment. She played a key role in the world-first cochlear implant MEG brain scanner study in collaboration with Macquarie University Australian Research Council (ARC) Centre of Excellence and Cochlear Ltd. She has over 40 years clinical and research experience in the hearing industry, with particular expertise in early auditory and listening and spoken language intervention for children with profound hearing loss. She is the founder and Executive Director of Hear and Say, an internationally recognised, not-for-profit organisation based in Brisbane, Australia providing hearing services for over 2000 children.
As the Chair and Co-founder of First Voice (a national alliance of Australian and New Zealand like-minded organisations in hearing health), she plays a very significant role in raising the profile of hearing health in Australasia and increasingly shares her insights across continents. Dr Dornan was instrumental in forming the Queensland Hearing Nexus, a collaborative group of like-minded organisations in hearing research and research-based clinical evidence and is a lead researcher in the Hearing Collaborative Research Centre with particular expertise in the areas of paediatrics and neuroscience.
Dr Dornan has disseminated her research internationally, in premier peer-reviewed journals and via invited keynote addresses at prestigious conferences. Her publications include 13 scientific journal articles (+ a further 6 in press), one book, and one book chapter. Dr Dornan’s Doctorate of Philosophy, awarded in 2012, was a world first demonstrating that deaf children diagnosed before 2.4 years, fitted with appropriate hearing devices and entering an auditory verbal therapy (AVT) program can progress in listening, speech, language and self-esteem at the same rate as children with natural hearing, with 80% of the children catching up with their normally hearing peers prior to school age.