Tropical Geography ›› 2021, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (1): 177-189.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.003308

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Visual Analysis of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Research Based on CiteSpace

Yuxing Zhang(), Guicai Li()   

  1. School of Urban Planning and Design, Peking University, Shenzhen 518055, China
  • Received:2020-06-15 Revised:2020-09-04 Online:2021-01-05 Published:2021-02-19
  • Contact: Guicai Li;


The economic status and development history of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) in China determine the inevitability of becoming a research hotspot and lead to the dispersion, complexity, and accumulation of academic research about the region. After 40 years since Reform and Opening-up, it is necessary to sort and summarize the existing research about GBA. This paper uses CiteSpace, a bibliometric and visualization tool, to analyze the horizontal characteristics of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao research by scientific research institutions and academic cooperation and its vertical characteristics by literature quantity evolution, research fields, and research hotspot migration over the past 30 years. The aim is to reveal the law of changes of the research hotspots in the existing literature and make some basic contributions to the next stage of Bay Area research. The results show: 1) Research institutions can be divided into six categories based on their attributes: university, think tank, government, media, financial institution, and other research groups, which are mainly concentrated in Guangdong Province and the types of institutions are diverse. A cooperation network has initially formed among these institutions, but the intensity is not high. 2) The cooperation network between individual scholars has formed. Although some scholars have posted more than 10 papers and paid attention to this field for a long time, the connection is relatively weak. 3) According to the volume of annual publications, the study of Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macao can be divided into four stages: start-up period, exploratory period, stable period, and outbreak period. Scholars in the start-up period focused on the issues of how to carry out industrial upgrading and financial cooperation between Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macao under the socialist commodity economic system. During the exploratory period, research topics showed a diversified trend, covering fields such as regional economics, industrial economics, and finance. The promulgation of CEPA (Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement) prompted scholars to carry out research mainly from two major directions: the free trade relationship between Hong Kong, Macao, and the Mainland and the spatial planning of the Greater Pearl River Delta. The main topic of the stable period is the "Free Trade Zone." After 2014, "Bay Area Economy" began to appear as another key topic. During the outbreak period, the disciplines of Guangdong, Hong Kong, and Macao research began to be subdivided, expanding from regional economics and finance to the directions of spatial economics, innovation economics, comparative economics, transportation geography, political science, and sociology. 4) Research before 2015 mainly focused on how to enlarge the economic cake through free trade and promote the coordinated development of the Pearl River Delta, Hong Kong, and Macao. After that, research has diluted the conceptual boundary between Hong Kong, Macao, and the original Pearl River Delta Urban Agglomeration, and strengthened the attributes of the urban agglomerations in the GBA. Meanwhile, the subjects are no longer limited to the economic field.

Key words: CiteSpace, Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao, Pearl River Delta, Bibliometrics, knowledge map, research context

CLC Number: 

  • F127