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Three Decades of Research on Smart Cities: Mapping Knowledge Structure and Trends

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Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences & Network for Education and Research on Peace and Sustainability (NERPS), Hiroshima University, Hiroshima 739-8511, Japan
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Chaire Entrepreneuriat Territoire Innovation (ETI), Groupe de Recherche en Gestion des Organisations (GREGOR), IAE Paris—Sorbonne Business School, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, 75013 Paris, France
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Department of Remote Sensing and GIS, University of Tabriz, Tabriz 51368, Iran
4
Interior Design Program, Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, College of Health and Human Development, California State University Northridge, Northridge, CA 91330, USA
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Chiara Delmastro and Sara Torabi Moghadam
Sustainability 2021, 13(13), 7140; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13137140
Received: 19 May 2021 / Revised: 20 June 2021 / Accepted: 23 June 2021 / Published: 25 June 2021
The concept of smart cities has gained significant momentum in science and policy circles over the past decade. This study aims to provide an overview of the structure and trends in the literature on smart cities. Bibliometric analysis and science mapping techniques using VOSviewer and CiteSpace are used to identify the thematic focus of over 5000 articles indexed in the Web of Science since 1991. In addition to providing insights into the thematic evolution of the field, the three-decade study period is divided into two sub-periods (1991–2015 and 2016–2021). While splitting the dataset into more sub-periods would have been desirable, we decided to only examine two sub-periods as only very few papers have been published until 2010. The annual number of publications has progressively increased since then, with a surge in the annual number of publications observable from 2015 onwards. The thematic analysis showed that the intellectual base of the field has been very limited during the first period, but has expanded significantly since 2015. Over time, some thematic evolutions, such as further attention to linkages to climate change and resilience, and more emphasis on security and privacy issues, have been made. The thematic analysis shows that existing research on smart cities is dominated by either conceptual issues or underlying technical aspects. It is, therefore, essential to do more research on the implementation of smart cities and actual and/or potential contributions of smart cities to solving societal issues. In addition to elaborating on thematic focus, the study also highlights major authors, journals, references, countries, and institutions that have contributed to the development of the smart cities literature. View Full-Text
Keywords: smart city; internet of things; big data analytics; urban planning; science mapping; bibliometric analysis smart city; internet of things; big data analytics; urban planning; science mapping; bibliometric analysis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sharifi, A.; Allam, Z.; Feizizadeh, B.; Ghamari, H. Three Decades of Research on Smart Cities: Mapping Knowledge Structure and Trends. Sustainability 2021, 13, 7140. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13137140

AMA Style

Sharifi A, Allam Z, Feizizadeh B, Ghamari H. Three Decades of Research on Smart Cities: Mapping Knowledge Structure and Trends. Sustainability. 2021; 13(13):7140. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13137140

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sharifi, Ayyoob, Zaheer Allam, Bakhtiar Feizizadeh, and Hessam Ghamari. 2021. "Three Decades of Research on Smart Cities: Mapping Knowledge Structure and Trends" Sustainability 13, no. 13: 7140. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/su13137140

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