Original scientific paper

Rural areas, rural population, and rural space in central Europe (JCEA countries): Research visualization in Scopus and Web of Science

2022, 23 (1)   p. 246-260



This study, based on bibliometrics (related to scientometrics) and science mapping, along with some sociological analytical insights, assesses contexts of the concept 'rural' in articles written by authors affiliated to JCEA (Journal of Central European Agriculture) member countries: Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia (with addition of Austria because of geographical proximity and historical ties), using citation databases Scopus and Web of Science (WoS), and visualization software VOSviewer. Most papers are published outside the scope of agricultural production studies, clustered strongly in the fields of medicine, physical environment, social sciences, and ecological interactions. A small proportion of the reference to “rural” in agricultural science seems self-assumed in the general association of agricultural production with rural space. The papers mainly refer to geographical area, space or territory where interactions between specific social and natural processes take place. Topics tackling rural space as a societal form and arrangements, e.g. sustainable rural development and transformation, are the most recent. National and regional journals show strong recent presence but papers are also published in principal international journals. Co-author networking (countries / institutions / affiliations) indicates strong regional co-operation which is strongest in the immediate neighborhood. Co-authorship based on spatial proximity can be partly explained by less ambitious internationalization of research activities. Although publication patterns in both databases show similar traits, some database effect can be observed, also due to the inclusion of ESCI (Emerging Sources Citation Index) in 2015.


rural issues, rurality, bibliometrics, science mapping, research evaluation, interdisciplinary research

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