How Does Packaging Influence Consumer Behavior? A Multidisciplinary Bibliometric Study

  •  Kelly Vieira    
  •  Valderí Alcantara    
  •  José Willer do Prado    
  •  Cintia Pinto    
  •  Daniel Rezende    


The objective of this research was to analyze the academic literature focusing on how product packaging influences consumer behavior through the use of a bibliometric study. To accomplish this, we analyzed 111 articles, published from 1982 to 2014, indexed in the Web of Science database maintained by Thomson Reuters (formerly the ISI Web of Knowledge). For the analysis, we used descriptive statistics, bibliometric analyses, and networks to explore characteristics of the articles that related to their authors, journals, evolution, keywords, and research topics. Published manuscripts had a network of dispersed ownership without a central author; most works were published in the United States. Although most of the articles were from the categories of Business & Economics and Food Science & Technology, there is a growing trend in the amount of research and its expansion into subject areas such as chemistry, nutrition, engineering, and more recently, environmental studies, behavioral science, and public policy. An article by Wansink (1996) was the most-cited out of the survey of 111 articles, as well as the most-cited reference for these items. We conclude that the study of packaging and its influence on consumer behavior is a multidisciplinary subject that is highly relevant to purchase decisions, conscious consumption, food preservation, health problems, contamination, storage and transport, obesity and smoking, and sustainability issues.

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