Northeastern University Blockchain Organization Students Win $15,000 Research Fellowship To Study Emerging Crypto Technologies

NEU Blockchain Organization
3 min readJul 29, 2022


Five students from Northeastern University — Shubh Patni, Binh Thai, Francesco Marzorati, Nikola Dobrev, and Prasad Pathak, have been awarded a research fellowship from Phemex, a crypto trading startup located in Singapore, to study topics related to Web3, cryptocurrencies, and the blockchain.

For two months these five students participated in a personalized research module and worked one-on-one with Phemex staff, exploring topics related to these emerging industries.

In collaboration with the Northeastern Blockchain Organization, Phemex has allocated $15,000 dollars in scholarship funding to the above students for their research, which after publication will be featured on the company’s website. Phemex has a monthly viewership of over 50,000 readers, so these students’ papers will be widely viewed and will bring tremendous value to many researchers and investors in the blockchain community.

About Phemex:

Phemex is a Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange that handles both spot and derivative trading. More information can be found on their website.

Introducing The Students

  1. Shubh Patni is a computer science and economics student who’s very passionate about programming, cryptocurrencies, and technology. Shubh is also the Head of PR at Northeastern’s Blockchain Club. For his research project, he’ll be studying the Avalanche Network and exploring how it compares with Ethereum, the second largest cryptocurrency, blockchain, and smart contract platform by market cap. Specifically, he’ll be looking at how Avalanche attempts to solve the blockchain trilemma and analyzing the platform’s consensus protocol — Snowman.
  2. Binh Thai, originally from Hanoi, Vietnam, is a Master’s student majoring in quantitative finance. On a personal level, Binh’s very interested in discussing technology, financial markets, and opportunities related to finance and Web3. For Phemex, he’ll be writing a research thesis on Blue-chip NFT profile pictures (PFPs), and will closely analyze the fundamental value behind NFT projects such as CryptoPunks, Bored Ape Yacht Club, and World of Women.
  3. Francesco Marzorati is a sophomore majoring in economics and minoring in computer science and business analytics. Francesco’s personal interests include decentralized finance (DeFi), play-to-earn (P2E) games, yield farming, and on-chain analytics. For his research project, he’ll be evaluating the Near Protocol and analyzing the layer 1 blockchain’s ecosystem, including the benefits it brings to the industry. On a granular level, he’ll be providing a competitive overview with other platforms such as Cosmos and Polkadot.
  4. Nikola Dobrev is a rising third year student majoring in data science and minoring in business administration. Nikola’s really interested in the decentralized finance (DeFi) space and how it’s being used to solve financial issues. For Phemex, he’ll be researching the top five blockchains by total value locked and will explore the nuances between them by comparing their DeFi ecosystems.
  5. Prasad Pathak is currently pursuing a Master’s in information systems and smart contracts. Prasad has previous experience in the management consultancy industry building technical solutions for big Pharma companies. Prasad is very excited about the notions of decentralized agency and ownership. For his research project, he’ll be exploring the music industry and its potential transition to Web3, and will perform a case study analysis of Audius, a Web3 music platform that seeks to solve some of the issues plaguing the music industry today.

For those interested in exploring these students’ profiles and downloading their research, they can be found on the Phemex Student Foundation website.



NEU Blockchain Organization

A student-led organization dedicated to advancing blockchain education, development, and research.