A Bibliometric Review of Self-Compassion Research: Science Mapping the Literature, 1999 to 2020
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionSwami, V., Andersen, N. & Furnham, A. A Bibliometric Review of Self-Compassion Research: Science Mapping the Literature, 1999 to 2020. Mindfulness 12, 2117–2131 (2021). Online First 5 June 2021 10.1007/s12671-021-01662-0
Objectives Science mapping is a methodology that combines quantitative analysis, classification, and visualisation to identify the composition and inter-relationships between bibliographic objects. Although science mapping has proven useful in diverse fields, we are not aware of its application to self-compassion research, which we sought to rectify here. Specifically, we used bibliometric science mapping to identify the overarching structure of self-compassion research between 1999 and 2020. Methods We collected all articles using the search terms “self-compassion” and “self compassion” in the Web of Science database (N = 2185 articles). Keywords co-occurrence analysis, co-citation analysis, and network centrality analysis were used to describe the knowledge base and volume of self-compassion research. Results Our analyses identified four general themes in the self-compassion literature: “mental health and well-being”, “clinical outcomes”, “self-perceptions”, and “physical health and family issues”. The first three themes are relatively well-consolidated and represent core areas of research on self-compassion, whereas the fourth theme is relatively less well-connected and more emergent within the broader corpus. Conclusions Our results, and the provision of interactive maps and extensive tables, should allow readers to examine connections between research clusters and areas, generate novel research ideas, and more fully understand the knowledge base of self-compassion research.