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Lia Sheer, Ph.D. 

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I am an Assistant Professor of Innovation and New-Ventures (Senior Lecturer, Tenure-Track) at the Coller School of Management of Tel-Aviv University, Israel. I research about managerial strategy, technology and innovation, corporate and public scientific research, markets for technology, and knowledge spillovers. More specifically, my research focuses on organizing scientific discovery for innovation inside R&D firms.  As part of my research initiatives, I compile open-source large-scale firm-level datasets. My research has been featured in top academic journals, including American Economic Review, and Research Policy. I received my PhD in Business Administration (Strategy) from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. I was the 2020-2021 recipient of Fuqua's School of Business Best Dissertation Award. I earned an MBA from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and a B.A. in Economics from Tel-Aviv University. Prior to academia, I worked in the Banking Industry and was an Economic Consultant in the Ministry of Defense Budget Department, Israel. I am a co-founder of Fuqua-STAGE (Society to Advance Gender Equality in Business Academia) and an advocate for women in STEM.

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-  “Sitting on the fence: integrating the two worlds of scientific discovery and invention within the firm”Research Policy, 51(7):104550, September 2022

-  “Knowledge spillovers and corporate investment in scientific research” (w/ A. Arora & S. Belenzon), American Economic Review, 111(3): 871-898, March 2021

-  “Matching patents to Compustat firms, 1980-2015: Dynamic reassignment, name changes, and ownership structures” (w/ A. Arora & S. Belenzon), Research Policy, 50(5):10421, June 2021

- Dataset: DISCERN: Duke Innovation & SCientific Enterprises Research Network (w/ A. Arora & S. Belenzon). Zenodo:, December 2020


The Effect of Public Science on Corporate R&D (w/ A. Arora & S. Belenzon & L. Cioaca & H. Zhang)

We explore the relationship between corporate R&D and the different components of public science: knowledge, human capital, and inventions. We identify the relationships through firm-specific exposure to changes in federal agency budgets that stem from the congressional appropriations process. Our results indicate that R&D by established firms, which account for more than three-quarters of business R\&D, is affected by scientific knowledge produced by universities only when the latter is embodied in inventions or PhD scientists; abstract knowledge advances per se elicit little or no response.  Furthermore, the effect of university research on corporate R&D is nuanced. University inventions substitute for corporate inventions and reduce the demand for internal research by corporations. On the other hand, the human capital trained by universities fosters innovation in firms. These offsetting effects suggest that public science substitutes for R&D in established corporations. We conjecture that the substitution reflects downstream competition from startups that commercialize university inventions. Our findings question the belief that universities generate a non-rival public good, which in turn leads to cost reductions in corporate R&D through knowledge spillovers.  



DISCERN: Duke Innovation & SCientific Enterprises Research Network [UPDATED DATA COMING IN 2023!!!]

The dataset traces more than 4,000 U.S. publicly traded R&D firms' investment in innovation and scientific discovery for 35 years. It includes patents, scientific articles, and NPL citations matched to Compustat firms over the period 1980-2015. It introduces a major extension and improvement to the historical NBER patent data (Hall, Jaffe, & Trajtenberg, 2001). In extending the match to Compustat up to 2015, we address two major challenges: name changes and ownership changes. The data including an historical firm name list with dynamic reassignment, are publicly available. First presented at the NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research) Innovation Information Initiative meeting in December 2019.

Download the data at


When using the data, please cite both papers below:

  1.  Arora, A., Belenzon, S. and Sheer, L., 2021. Knowledge spillovers and corporate investment in scientific research. American Economic Review, 111(3), pp.871-98.

  2. Arora, A., Belenzon, S. and Sheer, L., 2021. Matching patents to Compustat firms, 1980–2015: Dynamic reassignment, name changes, and ownership structures. Research Policy, 50(5), p.104217.


I³: Open Innovation Dataset Index

A collection of innovation datasets, and related tools, platforms and resources used by the broader research community

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