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The structure of sustainability marketing research: a bibliometric review and directions for future research

Jishnu Bhattacharyya (Nottingham University Business School China, University of Nottingham – Ningbo China, Ningbo, China)

Asia-Pacific Journal of Business Administration

ISSN: 1757-4323

Article publication date: 2 May 2022

Issue publication date: 24 February 2023




Sustainability principles have been practiced and researched in marketing for nearly five decades, but the challenges we face today are still significant. This context defines the purpose of this paper, which is to find, synthesize and critically evaluate the existing literature on marketing in a sustainability context from 1969 to 2019. The ultimate aim is to provide a unified body of literature on sustainability marketing and classify the extant literature.


The relevant articles from selected journals were identified and manually verified using the Scopus database. The SPAR- 4- SLR protocol provides the framework for the methodology. In total, 749 articles were eligible for inclusion in the study.


The research findings are presented in the form of article categorization into 11 thematic categories. The thematic categories outlined previous studies' trend and contribution characteristics under the individual category, illustrating their implications.

Practical implications

The literature review aids in understanding the current state of research and piques researchers' interest in sustainability marketing. The findings of the study will be a valuable resource for future scholars, managers and policymakers.


This study contributes to the existing literature by providing valuable insights from previous research on the research trend in sustainability marketing and by providing a recommendation for future research avenues. After a long hiatus, this is the most up-to-date comprehensive article, providing a general overview of research trends.



Bhattacharyya, J. (2023), "The structure of sustainability marketing research: a bibliometric review and directions for future research", Asia-Pacific Journal of Business Administration, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 245-286.



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