Design thinking capabilities in the digital world: A bibliometric analysis of emerging trends
ISSN der Zeitschrift
Recent research suggests that design thinking practices may foster the development of needed capabilities in new digitalised landscapes. However, existing publications represent individual contributions, and we lack a holistic understanding of the value of design thinking in a digital world. No review, to date, has offered a holistic retrospection of this research. In response, in this bibliometric review, we aim to shed light on the intellectual structure of multidisciplinary design thinking literature related to capabilities relevant to the digital world in higher education and business settings, highlight current trends and suggest further studies to advance theoretical and empirical underpinnings. Our study addresses this aim using bibliometric methods—bibliographic coupling and co-word analysis as they are particularly suitable for identifying current trends and future research priorities at the forefront of the research. Overall, bibliometric analyses of the publications dealing with the related topics published in the last 10 years (extracted from the Web of Science database) expose six trends and two possible future research developments highlighting the expanding scope of the design thinking scientific field related to capabilities required for the (more sustainable and human-centric) digital world. Relatedly, design thinking becomes a relevant approach to be included in higher education curricula and human resources training to prepare students and workers for the changing work demands. This paper is well-suited for education and business practitioners seeking to embed design thinking capabilities in their curricula and for design thinking and other scholars wanting to understand the field and possible directions for future research.