Co-word analysis; Higher education; Human resource management
This article aims at providing a conceptual structure and charts the evolution of human resource management research in higher education from 1966-2019. By using co-word analysis, the current study analyses 352 publications related to human resource management practices in higher education from the Scopus database. Thematic networks reveal that research on human resource management in higher education can be categorised into five themes, namely 'human resource management systems and societies and institutions', 'teaching and the field of application of human resource management in education', 'educators' performance and motivation', 'innovation and sustainable development in universities', and 'educational decision-making and personnel management'. Based on dominant keywords and a further content analysis of each identified theme, future research directions such as applications of emerging technologies (e.g., artificial intelligence, cloud computing, machine learning) in human resources management, decision-making systems, green human resource management and personnel management in higher education are recommended. This study is one of the first attempts to use co-word analysis to explore insight into the structure of human resource management research in higher education and to visualise all subfields and their interrelationships. It thereby provides a robust roadmap for further investigation in this field.