24 May 2021

Associate Professor Yang Liu is among the leading contributors to the subject areas “Big Data” and “Business Analytics” in the manufacturing industry. This achievement also puts Linköping University among the best institutions worldwide.

 A man in blue shirt sitting down Associate Professor Yang Liu Teiksma Buseva

“The ranking is done first by the number of publications and then by total citations, citations per paper, etc. My collaboration partner in Xi’an China, Professor Yingfeng Zhang, and I were equally ranked as number one according to these criteria. Professor Angappa Gunasekaran, who has the same number of publications but fewer citations, took third place”, explains Associate Professor Yang Liu at the Division of Environmental Technology and Management, Department of Management and Engineering, Linköping University.

Big data is of great importance in manufacturing. It relates to massive and complicated sets of data that are impossible to collect, archive, handle and process using conventional data management systems.

As manufacturers are shifting towards digital transformation, which is driven by big data, business analytics is becoming a dominant methodology for strategic decision-making in business.

“This is not only an achievement for myself but also for Linköping University. I am more than happy to put Linköping University at the top of the ranking list, especially in such a hot and important research field. This will help Linköping University in all kinds of global ranking lists, since publications and citations are a crucial part of the ranking formulas”, says researcher Yang Liu. 

Associate Professor Yang Liu’s research focusses on product life-cycle management, sustainable smart manufacturing, cleaner manufacturing and maintenance in complex products and energy-intensive industries. His work ranges from comprehensive literature reviews to field studies that develop and apply new frameworks empirically.

“I still remember clearly that during my job interview in September 2017 I mentioned that my goal was to put LiU at the top of the list in my research field. Even though I did not promise anything, I was pretty confident that it was achievable. I am glad that my years of hard work have finally paid off and been recognised by the global research community”, concludes Associate Professor Yang Liu.


Saumyaranjan Sahoo (2021): Big data analytics in manufacturing: a bibliometric analysis of research in the field of business management, International Journal of
Production Research, DOI: 10.1080/00207543.2021.1919333


Brief facts


The study uses a bibliometric analysis to systematically identify and analyse all research articles in the area of “big data analytics in manufacturing” in the Scopus database. The study sample included 89 out of 2071 research articles published in journals on the Quality List of the Australian Business Deans Council (ABDC)  A*/A  Journal category, meaning that papers published in secondary journals were excluded to ensure the high quality and impact of the study. 

Top 3 contributors

  • Associate Professor Yang Liu
  • Professor Yingfeng Zhang
  • Professor Angappa Gunasekaran 

5 leading institutions by contributors affiliation

  • Ministry of Education (China),
  • Northwestern Polytechnical University (China),
  • Linköpings University (Sweden),
  • University of Vaasa (Finland),
  • California State University (United States).


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