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Public debt sustainability: a bibliometric co-citation visualization analysis

Kaur, Amanpreet; Kumar, Vikas; Sindhwani, Rahul; Lata Singh, Punj; Behl, Abhishek


Amanpreet Kaur

Vikas Kumar

Rahul Sindhwani

Punj Lata Singh


Due to the financial disturbances created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the burden on the government exchequer, it is expected to see a rise in the knowledge base of the research corpus so far as the government's fiscal sustainability is concerned. Therefore, the present research examines a systematic quantitative analysis of public debt sustainability research by applying a bibliometric approach. Research also analyzes journals, institutions, countries and authors contributing to public debt sustainability.

This paper scrutinizes the published scientific research on public debt sustainability based on the dataset of 535 articles from 1991 to 2021 obtained from the Scopus database. Biblioshiny (R-based application) and VoSviewer software were used to perform bibliometric analysis through Performance analysis and science mapping techniques. The authors combined co-citation analysis (CCA), bibliometric analysis, keyword co-occurrence analysis (KCA) and a conceptual thematic map of the most cited articles to find the intellectual structure.

The research identified three dominating clusters, e.g. fiscal sustainability and policy rules, empirical sustainability testing and debt and growth dynamics. Another finding was that most articles were analytical and empirical and few descriptive articles were found. Owing to the empirical nature of the domain, the issues concerning public debt sustainability have continued to change over the past decades for different economies, reflecting the complexity and diversity of economic structures of different economies at different times.

The insight of this article provides academicians and researchers with a more refined comprehension of the conceptual and intellectual structure of the research corpus. The present research complements the existing literature review studies by pushing the research towards emerging or less developed issues such as financial and debt crises.


Kaur, A., Kumar, V., Sindhwani, R., Lata Singh, P., & Behl, A. (2024). Public debt sustainability: a bibliometric co-citation visualization analysis. International Journal of Emerging Markets, 19(4), 1090-1110.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 13, 2022
Online Publication Date Aug 29, 2022
Publication Date Mar 19, 2024
Deposit Date Jun 24, 2024
Journal International Journal of Emerging Markets
Print ISSN 1746-8809
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 19
Issue 4
Pages 1090-1110
Public URL
Publisher URL