Measuring Corporate Culture Using Machine Learning
104 Pages Posted: 21 Oct 2018 Last revised: 29 Jun 2020
Date Written: June 28, 2020
We create a culture dictionary using one of the latest machine learning techniques—the word embedding model—and 209,480 earnings call transcripts. We score the five corporate cultural values of innovation, integrity, quality, respect, and teamwork for 62,664 firm-year observations over the period 2001–2018. We show that an innovative culture is broader than the usual measures of corporate innovation – R&D expenses and the number of patents. Moreover, we show that corporate culture correlates with business outcomes, including operational efficiency, risk-taking, earnings management, executive compensation design, firm value, and deal making, and that the culture-performance link is more pronounced in bad times. Finally, we present suggestive evidence that corporate culture is shaped by major corporate events, such as mergers and acquisitions.
Keywords: machine learning; word embedding; semi-supervised learning; corporate culture; cultural fit; acculturation; mergers and acquisitions
JEL Classification: C45; G34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation