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Two decades of research on nation branding: a review and future research agenda

Andy W. Hao (Department of Management and Marketing, University of Hartford, West Hartford, Connecticut, USA)
Justin Paul (Graduate School of Business, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico, USA)
Sangeeta Trott (ITM-SIA Business School, Mumbai, India)
Chiquan Guo (The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Edinburg, Texas, USA)
Heng-Hui Wu (Department of Business Administration, Providence University, Taichung, Taiwan)

International Marketing Review

ISSN: 0265-1335

Article publication date: 30 August 2019

Issue publication date: 12 February 2021




Despite the growing interest by scholars, practitioners and public policymakers, there are still divergent and fragmented conceptualizations of nation branding as the field is still developing. In response, the purpose of this paper is to review and synthesize nation branding research and to provide directions for future research.


The authors review peer-reviewed theoretical and empirical journal articles published during the last two decades – from 1998 to 2018. Selected journal articles on nation branding were subsequently synthesized for further insights.


The field of nation branding is fragmented and has developed in the course of the last two decades in different directions. This paper identifies key publication outlets and articles, major theoretical and methodological approaches and primary variables of interest that exist in the nation branding literature. The findings also highlight several research themes for future research.


This research fills a need to summaries the current state of the nation branding literature and identifies research issues that need to be addressed in the future.



Hao, A.W., Paul, J., Trott, S., Guo, C. and Wu, H.-H. (2021), "Two decades of research on nation branding: a review and future research agenda", International Marketing Review, Vol. 38 No. 1, pp. 46-69.



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