An Explorative Map Based on a Quantitative Review of a Multi-Disciplinary Bibliography
This article aims to map—for the first time—the emerging but not yet substantively defined field of economics of religion. To do so, we conducted a quantitative literature review, using the Partly Annotated Bibliography of Economics of Religion’s (Koch 2011) 763 publications as the sample. Although loaded with limitations like the German language backlog, the sample allows for an explorative map as it also includes publications from a variety of disciplines. The sample was coded along formal variables like discipline, date of publication, or language to quantify the body of literature, thereby enabling us to establish parameters to formally map the field. Our findings shed light on the most important disciplines (RQ1), most used publication formats (2), language frequencies (3), and most published experts (4); in addition, by synthesizing the results, we present trends and patterns according to disciplines over time (5) and interpret peak publication frequencies around 9/11. The limitation of the sample on language and comprehensiveness as well as the simplification of a solely quantitative approach is discussed, and further research including quantitative citation-based studies and qualitative measures is proposed.