A bibliometric analysis of obesity in marketing research

Adah-Kole Onjewu, Razieh Sadraei*, Vahid Jafari-Sadeghi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: In spite of wide civic and academic interest in obesity, there are no bibliometric records of this issue in the marketing corpus. Thus, this inquiry is conceived to address this shortcoming with a bibliometric analysis of Scopus indexed articles published on the subject.

Design/methodology/approach: The analysis followed a five-step science mapping approach of study design, data collection, data analysis, data visualisation and data interpretation. R programming software was used to review 88 peer reviewed journals published between 1987 and 2021.

Findings: A sizable stream of literature exploring obesity has accrued in the marketing area as authors have drawn parallels between the influence of persuasive communication and advertising on human wellbeing and child health. The United States of America is found to be by far the country with the highest number of publications on obesity, followed by Australia and the United Kingdom. The topic dendrogram indicates two strands of obesity discourse: (1) social and policy intervention opportunities and (2) the effects on social groups in the population.

Research limitations/implications: This review will shape future enquiries investigating obesity. Beyond the focus on children, males and females, an emerging focus on cola, ethics, food waste, milk, policy-making and students is highlighted.

Originality/value: This is the first bibliometric review of obesity in the marketing literature. This is especially timely for weighing up the utility of research aimed at understanding and reporting the trends, influences and role of stakeholders in addressing obesity.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuroMed Journal of Business
Early online date12 Sept 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Sept 2022


  • Obesity
  • Marketing
  • Advertising
  • Health
  • Policy
  • Bibliometrics


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