Research Expertise and Interest
commercializing breakthroughs, invention, innovation, patents, big data, ethics and technology, leadership
Lee Fleming teaches the engineering leadership and capstone integration courses within the Masters of Engineering curriculum and doctoral courses on innovation and entrepreneurship. His early research investigated how managers can increase their organization's chances of inventing a breakthrough through types of collaboration, the integration of scientiﬁc and empirical search strategies, and the recombination of diverse technologies. He was the first to disambiguate the U.S. patent record and demonstrated that noncompete agreements create a brain-drain from states that enforce noncompetes to states that do not. He has also built a public database of crowdfunding data and published in Science, demonstrating that Kickstarter funding in a region draws greater venture capital investment subsequently, and that almost one third of U.S. invention relies on Federal research. His most recent work applies causal methods to track knowledge diffusion and the impact of mobile engineers and scientists on a local economy and the absorptive capacity of firms. He is currently using big data techniques and Virtual Reality to study innovation, entrepreneurship, knowledge ﬂow and science policy.