Copenhagen Business School



AI and Webcrawling in Global Innovation Research at Copenhagen Business School

The ’Students involvled in research’ initiative

This thesis is centered on the overlap of information sciences, innovation and international business. As part of a multi-year research program on global R&D and innovation, we are building the most comprehensive database of industrial R&D centers worldwide. We presently have 10,500 entries including location of individual R&D centers, their date of establishment (or closure), and basic information of the parent firms. This data is useful for mapping the extent and evolution of globalization of R&D and innovation.


Collecting this data by hand is hard, therefore, the tasks for this Master thesis required are:


1. Develop a webcrawler that extracts global R&D location information from corporate websites, press releases, and other online sources.

  • This will require relevant programming skills.
  • The result should be a simple PC-based application with minimum search parameterization.
  • Prototypes of the webcrawler can be tested against existing data.

2. Include modern tools to improve target recognition and inclusion.

  • These tools could include natural language parsing, AI, etc.
  • The application should have two modes: on-demand parsing and background search.
  • It is estimated that some 30-40,000 R&D centers can be found this way.

3. Build (or integrate) a tool to graphically represent global R&D distribution based on geography, industry, and year-of-establishment data.


The student will be a member of an international project team coordinated by Prof. Max von Zedtwitz at EGB (CBS). The work can be done remotely, ie home-based, but frequent coordination meetings (in person or online) are expected. The student is already expected to have or acquire relevant programming and data science skills.


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