More than 1,200 empirical studies apply an index developed by HLS Professors Bebchuk, Cohen and Ferrell

A 2009 study by Harvard Law Professors Lucian Bebchuk LL.M. ’80 S.J.D. ’84, Alma Cohen, and Allen Ferrell ’95 continues to have enormous influence on present-day research, with the index developed in the study applied by more than 1,200 research papers in their empirical analysis.

Their study, “What Matters in Corporate Governance,” put forward a corporate governance index known as the the Entrenchment Index (E-Index). According to Google Scholar citations data, as of the end of 2020, the study was cited by more than 2,900 research papers, and a review of these research papers has identified more than 1,200 studies that have applied the E-index and used it in their empirical analysis.

The studies applying the E-Index include empirical studies that have been published in leading financial, economic, law, and accounting journals such as:

  • The Journal of Finance, The Journal of Financial Economics, and The Review of Financial Studies;
  • The Journal of Political Economy and the Review of Economics and Statistics;
  • The Journal of Law and Economics and Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization; and
  • The Journal of Accounting and Economics, Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, and The Accounting Review.

First published in 2009 in the Review of Financial Studies, the study identified six corporate governance provisions as especially important, demonstrated empirically the significance of these provisions for firm valuation, and put forward an “Entrenchment Index,” the E-Index, based on these six provisions.

You can read the full study on the Social Science Research Network at papers.SSRN.com.