with Tikshala Gothankar

It has been three months since our Ambassador Programme kicked off. Tikshala Gothankar, our dGen Ambassador for The Netherlands, was the first person who joined this programme. Since then, she has never stopped to surprise us with her outstanding performances and a hard-working mindset. Her passion for technology, her desire to learn from the European tech ecosystem, and her determination make her a priceless asset within the dGen Team.

She shared with us what she thinks about this programme, her opinion on the current tech status in the Netherlands, and what she is working on right now.

Hello, Tikshala, could you give us a bit of an insider perspective on how you found out about the ambassador program? And what encouraged you to become an ambassador?

I was looking for summer internship opportunities and found out about dGen’s ambassador program through a career portal named Graduateland.

The ambassador programme was a great match since my priorities were taking on a researcher and business development role. What encouraged me to become an ambassador was dGen’s focus on exploring the applications of emerging technologies in the broad field of decentralisation. I interviewed for the very reason that the experience would help me in finding a Master Thesis Topic in the field of decentralisation in Energy.

Moreover, to be able to collaborate with experts, contributing to the research reports and gaining exposure and recognition in the tech space is the experience every professional hopes for!

We are sure every team hopes for an ambassador as great as you! But, while we love working with you, can you tell us what part of being an ambassador you like the most?

The best part about being an ambassador is the opportunity to have a strong online presence and a highly engaged network. I am able to achieve this by corresponding with the CEOs and communication managers on the applications of emerging technologies by their companies.

I have always been curious to learn about the inner workings of the tech world. While contributing to dGen’s comprehensible research reports, I am introduced to these various applications and use cases of the emerging technologies. This knowledge inspires me to investigate the possibility of similar applications in my area of interest i.e. Energy.

In short, this experience is helping me develop the necessary skills required for a researcher and a business developer, thus shaping my career.

After three months as Ambassador, what do you think about the Netherlands tech ecosystem?

Even before interviewing at dGen, I was introduced to the Dutch’s blockchain ecosystem through dGen’s “Blockchain in Europe 2020 Review”.

The establishment of the Dutch Blockchain Coalition and Dutch AI Coalition reflects the country’s determination in embracing the digital era. These coalitions are facilitating the research on the possibilities and pitfalls of the digitalization of the industries, that will help bring about new strategies to navigate any potential risks for its successful implementation.

Additionally, with the Dutch government enabling the conditions for the booming tech hubs all over the Netherlands, it is paving way to numerous startups and empowering them in contributing to the betterment of society.

This is a great review of the Dutch and European ecosystem. Would you recommend this experience to someone?

Indeed, if you agree with what I feel is the best part about being a dGen ambassador.

Along with being the experts and extremely passionate about shaping a decentralised future in Europe, the dGen’s executive team is accommodative. We have insightful discussions on the latest trends and tech developments in different European ecosystems investigated by my teammates. We are assigned with weekly tasks and are given assistance with any issues that we face during executing it. The team keeps us motivated, also by giving us contributor credits and a spotlight on the website!

Collaborating with dGen is a great way to understand the working of a think tank and its purpose in bridging the gap between the sciences and society. With this ambassador programme, one can share dGen’s vision of a decentralised future by disseminating concise insights to the technical leaders that could contribute to innovative services and business models in the European ecosystems.

Thanks for your words, Tikshala. This programme aims to increase both the profile of our ambassadors and the scope of our branding. So, are you working on anything right now?

Currently, I am a second year Master’s Student in the EIT InnoEnergy program, focused on sustainable business and innovation in the energy sector. Being introduced to the various sectors of Energy through my academics and work experience, the particular field of Demand Side Management (DSM) has engaged my interest.

The potential of DSM to provide economic, reliability, environmental benefits and resolve the small-scale intermittency issue with the growing penetration of renewables, makes the deployment of DSM even more necessary. With Blockchain, the smart contracts can facilitate the demand response programs to help realize the DSM benefits. However, blockchain is still a technology driven development.

With my Master Thesis in the Eindhoven University of Technology, I aim to investigate the control mechanisms and regulations needed to address the socio-technical issues and to facilitate the adoption of blockchain by society.

To end this interview, what are your aspirations going forward?

Digitalization is enabling energy transition; I just want to contribute to bring about a systemic change that has a lasting impact.

Thanks, Tikshala, for sharing your thoughts on your experience working with us. We couldn’t be happier having you in the Netherlands and taking over dGen weekly tasks in the Dutch ecosystem. We expect great things from you!


Taking dGen to the Top of the Dutch Tech Ecosystem was originally published in dGen on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.