I’m a PhD candidate and have spent much time analysing journal articles. For example, my initial PRISMA-based structured literature review (SLR) involved analysing thousands of articles to determine seminal works, prolific authors, publishing journals, etc. Students and researchers spend a lot of time on bibliometric analysis however, it can be very difficult and time-consuming when faced with hundreds or thousands of research articles to make sense of the corpus.
Fortunately, various tools and technologies are available that make literature analysis more meaningful and, often, quicker. In the steps below, I describe how to install Bibliometrix, which offers very powerful charting and analysis of your corpus. Bibliometrix is an R package and, as such, I assume that the idea of having to code stops many people from using the package. The fantastic news is that no coding is needed; just follow my instructions below.
Time needed: 30 minutes
These instructions show how to install Bibliometrix for scientometric and bibliometric analysis and use Bibliometrix without coding. The instructions assume you use Microsoft Windows. I illustrate using a BibTeX file exported from Web of Science (which I find works best), but Bibliometrix will accept files from other sources such as Scopus.
- Download and Install R
Download R from The Comprehensive R Archive Network. Double click the downloaded file and install (accept any defaults).
- Download and Install RStudio
Download and install RStudio Desktop. Either the Open Source Edition or the RStudio Desktop Pro will work.
- Install the Bibliometrix and Shiny R Packages
Search in Windows for RStudio and double-click to open RStudio. Into the console (to the left), copy and paste the following code, and then click the enter key on your keyboard:
- Export data from Web of Science
Perform your literature search in Web of Science (WoS), click the ‘Export’ button, and select ‘BibTex’. On the ‘Export Records to BibTeX File’ screen, under the ‘Record Content:’ label, select ‘Full Record and Cited References’. Then, in ‘Records from’, select the first 500 records (if you have more than 500 records or else just select to download all records). If you have more than 500 records, then repeat the process until you have multiple .bib files that contain, in sum, all the records from WoS.
- Combine BibTeX files
If you needed to export multiple .bib files from WoS, then it’s necessary to combine the files so that you have a single .bib file. To combine BibTeX files, I find the easiest is to open a new file in a text editor (such as Notepad) and save that file on your computer with a file extension of .bib. Then open each of the .bib files you downloaded from WoS and copy and paste the content of each of the downloaded files into the new .bib file you created. What we are doing here is creating a single file that has all the data from the multiple files downloaded from WoS.
- Run Bibliometrix as an app
To open and start using Biblometrix for bibliometric analysis, copy and paste the following into the RStudio console, and then click the enter key on your keyboard:
Bibliometrix will soon load in a browser window.
Note: In future, when you want to use Bibliometrix, you’ll merely have to copy and paste the code immediately above into the RStudio console i.e. you won’t need to perform steps 1,2 and 3 as above every time you use Bibliometrix.
- Load your BibTeX file
In Bibliometrix, click ‘Data’ and then ‘Load Data’. Under the ‘Please, choose what to do’ label select ‘Import raw file(s) the under the ‘Database’label select ‘Web of Science (WoS/WoK)’. Select your .bib file by clicking Browse and then click the ‘START’ button. You are now ready to use Bibliometrix for your bibliometric analysis.
- Perform bibliometric analyses
To use Bibliometrix to analyse the data, merely select the overarching type of analyses you want to perform to the left of the screen, for example, ‘Sources’ and then the sub-menu item, such as ‘Most Relevant Sources’. Select your preferred options from the right of the screen and then click the ‘Run’ button. You’ll now see the results, and be able to export an image of the results and a table containing the results.