Marta Zanchi

“Don’t fall in love with the solution, fall in love with the problem”…..Really?

In this episode we look at needs-based innovation, and to get a better understanding I spoke with Marta Zanchi, PhD.
Marta spent 13 years at Stanford University, first as a doctoral student then as a faculty member and founding director of digital health at the Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign. Her experience spans from designing software and hardware devices to walking the full process of health technology innovation.

Marta has advised companies, spent time as a medical device fellow at the FDA, invested in companies through her role as an Equity Partner at Palo Alto-based DCVC, and she recently relocated to Barcelona where she’s the founder and managing partner of health-tech microVC fund Nina Capital. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Marta for a few years, and when I took a fresh look at her LinkedIn profile, there was something written that I just think really puts Marta into context as a person. Under “Philosophy and Goals” Marta wrote:

 “ I believe in a culture of collaboration and giving, and in the ripple effect in all aspects of life or business. Keeping my values close and my loved ones even closer, I am moved by a desire to make positive impact and serve a community of health tech innovators, so that their inspiring ideas become solutions that matter in the hands of those who need them the most. ”

You can find the link to Marta’s profile in the show notes below, and Marta also very kindly worked with the Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign to create a handout that you can also download using the big blue button below.

You can find all our shows here, as well as on the new health podcast network – called the ‘Health Podcast Network’.  You can find it at and discover other podcasts such as A Sherpa’s Guide to Innovation, Startup Health NOW, Oliver Wyman Health, What 2 Know by W2O Group, HIT Like a Girl, and many, many others.

University of Chicago - Master of Science in Biomedical Informatics

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Today’s Topics

  • Marta’s observations on the US and EU markets after living in Silicon Valley for 13 years and moving to Barcelona
  • Nina Capital’s vision, and the particular companies & solutions they seek
  • Introduction to Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign, and how it can help avoid pitfalls by going through their 3 step phases
  • How to get through the needs-finding stage, and who can benefit

Links and Resources Mentioned

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Dan Kendall

Dan Kendall


As an engineer and business leader, I've worked to develop, launch and scale innovative products and solutions that impact health and wellness. As an entrepreneur, I know firsthand what it takes to start a business, build a team, and compete in the global marketplace.

On Digital Health Today, I leverage my experiences to help great leaders and innovators tell their stories and connect to users, investors and other stakeholders.

Connect with me on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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