The evolution of social innovation and its global research trends: A bibliometric analysis

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Huma Sikandar
Umar Haiyat Abdul Kohar
Sidra Salam


The field of social innovation (SI) has received a growing interest from academia and policymakers from the past two decades. This research aims to identify research trends in the field of social innovation. For this purpose, we have carried out a bibliometric analysis on data from the previous 54 years, i.e. 1966-2019 from the Scopus database. This analysis is based on a bibliometric analysis of all published 'articles' in the SCOPUS database. The phrase "Social Innovation" was searched in title or abstract to search for the relevant articles. This research is carried out to investigate parameters such as publications in line with the years, subject areas, top journals, top authors and countries contributing to the SI field, collaborations and co-occurrence of keywords. Finding demonstrated that Frances R. Westley (University of waterloo) is the most prolific author in the SI field. Additionally, through an analysis of the top journals, we identified that 'Sustainability' is the top journal and that field is multidisciplinary. We have noticed a significant increase in the published articles in social innovation domain since 2016. This leads us to the conclusion that the topic has gained relevance among the academicians in recent years. The number of publications are expected to increase following this publication trend. We used VoS Viewer visual bibliometric analyser to identify the co-occurrence of keywords and co-authorship of countries. We found that Innovation, Social Entrepreneurship, Social Enterprises, Sustainability, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and governance are the focus areas of social innovation research. Some variables with infrequent occurrences, limitations and future recommendations are also discussed.

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Sikandar , H. ., Umar Haiyat Abdul Kohar, & Sidra Salam. (2021). The evolution of social innovation and its global research trends: A bibliometric analysis. Systematic Literature Review and Meta-Analysis Journal, 1(2), 117-133. Retrieved from


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