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Measuring organizational culture through text analysis: a step towards the future
April 28, 2020
By describing values and attitudes that shape the actions and behavior of employees, organizational culture can make a significant contribution to the success of a company. But how can that culture best be understood – and changed if necessary? A research project at Jacobs University Bremen in cooperation with the global consulting company Hofstede Insights aims to develop a new application for measuring and monitoring corporate culture. The goal is to provide companies with a tool that increases effectiveness by aligning organizational culture and strategy.
The title of the project is "Organizational Culture and Practices Dictionary" (OCPD) – its aim is, however, not to create a handbook but the development of a software. It is designed to serve companies as an alternative to employee surveys that have been customary to date for assessing corporate culture. The researchers are making use of the opportunities offered by digitization. "To measure corporate culture, we evaluate text data sources such as companies’ website texts or texts about the organization written by employees," says Dr. Murat Ardag, political psychologist at Jacobs University. The research team collaborates with companies like GPTW Germany and mba-exchange.com who can provide relevant data.
The classification is based on the Multi-Focus Model used by Hofstede Insights. It distinguishes several dimensions of corporate culture. Examined are, for example, how willing a company is to take risks, whether it is open to innovation and improvisation, and whether business performance takes precedence over the well-being of employees.
OCPD involves researchers from various disciplines and institutions, including the University of Oulu in Finland and the IWM Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien in Tübingen. The research project at Jacobs University Bremen is headed by Dr. Klaus Boehnke, Professor of Social Science Methodology.