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Serie Documentos de Trabajo: Consumer Behavior and Circular Economy - Bibliometric and Content Analysis

Consumer Behavior and Circular Economy - Bibliometric and Content Analysis


Climate Change is a reality that causes serious environmental problems on a global scale. It is caused by human action, specifically by the current economic model that is inefficient with regards to resource and energy use, and it causes harm to the environment. Searching for a solution for these problems, the Circular Economy (CE) mindset has gained importance over the last years. It provides an outline of an economic system based on models of production and consumption where cycles dominate. The shift towards CE cannot occur without considering Consumer Behavior (CB), i.e., the acceptance of circular products and services is a prerequisite for changing CB, which will in turn lead to an increase in circular consumption.

The rise of environmental problems and the solutions offered by the implementation of Circular Business Models (CBM) have drawn the attention of many researchers from various disciplines, including CB. This study systematizes the knowledge generated by 111 research papers on CE and CB gathered from the Scopus and WoS databases. It employs a content analysis focusing on the co-occurrence of keywords obtained in the bibliometric analysis, highlighting the importance of using quantitative methods, as well as that of China and the US as research settings. Co-occurrence analysis further identified three clearly differentiated clusters among the studies. Cluster 1. represents the attitudes and human traits that are a (pre-)condition to CB and decision making; Cluster 2. treats the topics of CB and decision making themselves in more in depth; and Cluster 3. represents issues related to Sustainable Development and CE. The above-outlined topic has been gaining attention in the recent years, yet there is still a broad gap for researchers to further investigate and propose valuable solutions and ideas to promote CBMs and circular consumption, to which this paper provides a contribution.

Key words: Circular Economy, Consumer Behavior, Bibliometric Analysis, Literature Review, Waste Management.