A Bibliometric Analysis of the Health Field Regarding Social Networks and Young People

Pilar Aparicio-Martinez, Alberto-Jesus Perea-Moreno, María Pilar Martinez-Jimenez, María Dolores Redel-Macías, Manuel Vaquero-Abellan, Claudia Pagliari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Social networks have historically been used to share information and support regarding health-related topics, and this usage has increased with the rise of online social media. Young people are high users of social media, both as passive listeners and as active contributors. This study aimed to map the trends in publications focused on social networks, health, and young people over the last 40 years. Scopus and the program VOSviewer were used to map the frequency of the publications, keywords, and clusters of researchers active in the field internationally. A structured keyword search using the Scopus database yielded 11,966 publications. The results reveal a long history of research on social networks, health, and young people. Research articles were the most common type of publication (68%), most of which described quantitative studies (82%). The main discipline represented in this literature was medicine, with 6062 documents. North American researchers dominate the field, both as authors and partners in international research collaborations. The present article adds to the literature by elucidating the growing importance of social networks in health research as a topic of study. This may help to inform future investments in public health research and surveillance using these novel data sources.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 21 Oct 2019


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