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Conceptualizing nation branding: the systematic literature review

José I. Rojas-Méndez (Sprott School of Business, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada)
Mozhde Khoshnevis (Department of Business, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran)

Journal of Product & Brand Management

ISSN: 1061-0421

Article publication date: 28 July 2022

Issue publication date: 19 January 2023




This paper aims to provide an integrated model of nation branding, propose a comprehensive definition of this concept and differentiate between nation branding and other related constructs.


To analyze nation branding academic literature, this paper used a systematic literature review approach to investigate academic studies related to nation and country branding. All relevant studies on the nation and country branding between 1996 and mid-2021 were extracted from six selected databases, including Elsevier’s Science Direct, Emerald, Sage, Wiley, Springer and Jstor, by using a Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis process. The reviewed papers were coded and analyzed to extract themes and concepts.


The results of this paper show that nation branding is influenced by six main factors, namely, business and marketing, political, social and cultural, economic and labor, international and environmental factors; it comprises one key component, that is, nation branding; it results in five major consequences, including social, economic and financial, business, international and political consequences, and is moderated mainly by socio-demographic variables. Additional contributions of this paper are the proposal of a comprehensive definition of nation branding based on the extant literature and identifying nation branding differences with other constructs that sometimes have been previously used interchangeably with nation branding. This paper concludes with suggestions for future research in the field.


This paper uses the themes and concepts uncovered by the analysis to conceptualize nation branding, provides an integrated model of nation branding and distinguishes it from other related branding concepts. This paper also summarizes what nation branding is versus what it is not.



Rojas-Méndez, J.I. and Khoshnevis, M. (2023), "Conceptualizing nation branding: the systematic literature review", Journal of Product & Brand Management, Vol. 32 No. 1, pp. 107-123.



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