Quantitative exploration into the diffusion process of creative ideas in economics: Nobel prize laureates

Meen Chul Kim, Yuanyuan Feng, Yongjun Zhu, Qing Ping

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this study, we aim to keep track of how creative ideas in economic sciences have been created and diffused into successive research. Toward that end, we investigate the intellectual landscapes of the Nobel Prize awardees’ research and the articles citing the literature. Our study is based on two sets of bibliographic records retrieved from the Web of Science. The “Creation” dataset, obtained through an author search, contains 1,745 original research and review articles of the laureates. The “Diffusion” dataset, consisting of 134,866 records, was collected by citation expansion. We identified bursting keywords and intellectual landscapes of the domain in creation and diffusion perspectives. We found that the dominant research themes that had influenced the laureates’ research from 1980 till 1999 were macroeconomic tests and economic analysis in time series. Then, the creative ideas have diverged into a variety of issues such as labor market, economic governance, market design, asset pricing, and economic decision making. We identified that these ideas have been diffused into successive research topics such as intertemporal general equilibrium model, reciprocity in economics, estimating profitable asset pricing, and socio-ecological economics. Finally, it is argued that economic research around the laureates has become divergent over time.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-4
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the Association for Information Science and Technology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Jan

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2015 by Association for Information Science and Technology

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science(all)
  • Library and Information Sciences


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