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Research thematic and emerging trends of contextual cues: a bibliometrics and visualization approach

Yang Zhao (Yanshan University, Qinhuangdao, China)
Lin Wang (School of Business Administration, Northeastern University, Shenyang, China)
Yaming Zhang (Yanshan University, Qinhuangdao, China)

Library Hi Tech

ISSN: 0737-8831

Article publication date: 24 June 2020

Issue publication date: 21 June 2021




The paper aims to clarify the importance of the psychological processing of contextual cues in the mining of individual attention resources. In recent years, the research of more open spatial perspective, such as spatial and scene perception, has gradually turned to the recognition of contextual cues, accumulating rich literature and becoming a hotspot of interdisciplinary research. Nevertheless, besides the fields of psychology and neuroscience, researchers in other fields lack systematic knowledge of contextual cues. The purpose of this study is to expand the research field of contextual cues.


We retrieved 494 papers on contextual cues from SCI/SSCI core database of the Web of Science in 1992–2019. Then, we used several bibliometric and sophisticated network analysis tools, such as HistCite, CiteSpace, VOSviewe and Pajek, to identify the time-and-space knowledge map, research hotspots, evolution process, emerging trends and primary path of contextual cues.


The paper found the core scholars, major journals, research institutions, and the popularity of citation to be closely related to the research of contextual cues. In addition, we constructed a co-word network of contextual cues, confirming the concept of behavior implementation intentions and filling in the research gap in the field of behavior science. Then, the quantitative analysis of the burst literature on contextual cues revealed that the research on it that focused more on multi-objective cues. Furthermore, an analysis of the main path helped researchers clearly understand and grasp in the development trend and evolution track of contextual cues.


Given academic research usually lags behind management practice, our systematic review of the literature to a certain extent make a bridge between theory and practice.



This research is supported by the National Social Science Fund of China (17BGL089).Declaration of conflicting interests: The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest with respect to the authorship or the publication of this article. This research was conducted without support from a grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.


Zhao, Y., Wang, L. and Zhang, Y. (2021), "Research thematic and emerging trends of contextual cues: a bibliometrics and visualization approach", Library Hi Tech, Vol. 39 No. 2, pp. 462-487.



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