The objectives of the study were to demonstrate the suitability of methodology based on a text mining toolset for detecting trends in scientific papers and to find trends that were present in the field of project management during the research time span (2000–2019).
An approach based on text mining tools supported by expert analysis was adopted due to an extensive number of publications in the field of project management. The novelty of the approach lies in the proposed method of trends discovery instead of the commonly used trends predefinition. The use of computer support allowed the full texts of papers, and not only abstracts, to be analysed, which significantly increased the reliability of the achieved results. Overall, 3,544 papers from seven journals were analysed.
As a result, 43 trends were discovered including seven long-lasting, four declining, 17 emerging and 15 ephemeris trends. Trends were analysed in comparison with the results of previous studies and project management frameworks. New trends and potential gaps were discussed.
The results highlight the topics of research that gain popularity among researchers, and which are related to the current problems that arise in project management. Therefore, the results can help focus studies on the most important areas, as well as find new ones which are not so popular yet. The knowledge of current trends is also important for those project managers who seek to improve the efficiency of their work.
The publication was supported under Cracow University of Economics statutory research funding scheme. Declaration of interest: None.
Wawak, S. and Woźniak, K. (2020), "Evolution of project management studies in the XXI century", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 13 No. 4, pp. 867-888. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJMPB-01-2020-0002
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