Toward a Taxonomy of Career Studies Through Bibliometric Visualization

Colin Lee, WA Felps, Y Baruch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


One of the greatest strengths and liabilities of the career field is its diversity. This diversity allows for wide coverage of relevant career dynamics across the lifespan and across levels of analysis. However, this diversity also reflects fragmentation, with career scholars failing to appreciate how the insights from other thought worlds can advance their own work. Using advanced bibliometric mapping techniques, we provide a systematic review of the 3141 articles on careers published in the management literature between 1990 and 2012. In doing so, we (1) map key terms to create a systematic taxonomy of career studies within the field of management studies, (2) provide a synthetic overview of each topic cluster which extends prior reviews of more limited scope, and (3) identify the most highly influential studies on careers within each cluster. Specifically, six local clusters emerged — i.e., international careers, career management, career choice, career adaptation, individual and relational career success, and life opportunities. To classify a broad range of research opportunities for career scholars, we also create a “global” map of 16,146 career articles from across the social sciences. Specifically, six global clusters emerged — i.e., organizational, individual, education, doctorate careers, high-profile careers, and social policy. We describe and compare the clusters in the map with an emphasis on those avenues career scholars in management have yet to explore.
Original languageEnglish
Article number10
Pages (from-to)339-351
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Vocational Behavior
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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