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Bibliometric Analysis of Trends in Global Sustainable Livelihood Research

Chenjia Zhang (), Yiping Fang (), Xiujuan Chen () and Tian Congshan ()
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Chenjia Zhang: Institute of Mountain Hazards & Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, China
Yiping Fang: Institute of Mountain Hazards & Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, China
Xiujuan Chen: University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Tian Congshan: Institute of Mountain Hazards & Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, China

Sustainability, 2019, vol. 11, issue 4, 1-28

Abstract: The concept of sustainable livelihoods (SL) is one of the most important subjects of sustainable development, and is an important long-term goal for poverty alleviation. There has been growing interest in the nature and practical application of SL in recent decades. This paper applies bibliometric analysis to collect and analyze data on sustainable livelihoods from the expanded Science Citation index (SCIE) and the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI). Bibliometric maps can assist greatly in visualizing and summarizing large volumes of data and in studying scientific outputs. The findings offer insights into research trends pertaining to SL, such as these: (1) In recent decades there has been an increase in both the number of papers on SL and their scientific influence. (2) The most active journals are Sustainability, Ecology and Society, Land Use Policy, and International Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology. (3) SL papers are distributed mainly in the fields of Environmental Sciences, Environmental Studies, Ecology, Planning & Development, and Green & Sustainable Science & Technology. (4) The USA and UK are leaders in SL research as measured by both the quantity and quality of SL publications. Some developing countries, notably India and China, have seen an increase in SL publications in recent years. (5) Wageningen University in Netherlands, the Chinese Academy of Science, and the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), headquartered in Indonesia, have had a major influence in the field of international SL research. (6) International cooperation has a positive effect on the growth of SL research, suggesting that there is a need for strengthening cooperation among countries, international institutions, and individuals. (7) Major areas of SL research (“hot topics”) are theoretical research on the SL concept; ecosystem conservation; poverty reduction in the poverty-stricken areas; the impact of climate change on livelihoods; and linkages between SL-related policies and institutional change.

Keywords: bibliometric analysis; sustainable livelihoods; sustainable development; visualization (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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