Identifying notions of environment in obesity research using a mixed methods approach

Torben Elgaard Jensen, Anne Katrine Kleberg Hansen, stanley Ulijaszek, Anders Kristian Munk, Anders Koed Madsen, Line Hillersdal, Astrid Pernille Jespersen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


The recent rise of computation‐based methods in social science has opened new
opportunities for exploring qualitative questions through analysis of large amounts of text. This article uses a mixed‐methods design that incorporates machine reading, network analysis, semantic analysis, and qualitative analysis of 414 highly cited publications on obesogenic environments between 2001 and 2015. The method produces an elaborate network map exhibiting five distinct notions of environment, all of which are currently active in the field of obesity research. The five notions are institutional, built, food, family, and bodily environments. The network map is proposed as a navigational tool both for policy actors who wish to coordinate efforts between a variety of stakeholders and for researchers who wish to understand their own research and research plans in light of different positions in the field. The final part of the article explores how the network map may also initiate a broader set of reflections on the configuration, differentiation, and coherence of the field of obesity research.
Original languageEnglish
JournalObesity Reviews
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)621-630
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Obesogenic environment
  • semantic analysis
  • visual network analysis

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