, Volume 40, Issue 2, pp 237–276 | Cite as

Mapping the social and behavioral sciences world-wide: Use of maps in portfolio analysis of national research efforts

  • A. J. Nederhof
  • E. Van Wijk


We have developed a method to identify and map the internationally most visible research topics occurring in the social and behavioral sciences, as well as the topics which changed most over a decade. Methods and data relevent to a portfolio analysis of national research efforts are described. Keywords used by authors in scientific or scholarly publications provide a window on scientific developments and changes in scientific research. Using an interdisciplinary database, the SSCI, developments in publications were traced world-wide and for the US, UK, France, Germany, and the Netherlands. We compared two periods: 1981–85 and 1986–90 We discuss the major substantive developments occurring during 1981–1990, as visible in maps depicting both topics and disciplines. It is shown that the maps, enriched with scientometric indicators of strengths and weaknesses of national research efforts, can be important tools for science policy. The findings indicate that the research front on many topics in both social and behavioral sciences is international in the late 1980s.


Political Science Behavioral Science Social Science Citation Index Portfolio Analysis Reference Country 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. J. Nederhof
    • 1
  • E. Van Wijk
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS)University of LeidenRB LeidenThe Netherlands

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