El mapa de la informalidad: Origen y evolución de los estudios sobre informalidad socioeconómica

Nelson Alfonso Gomez Cruz, David Enrique Anzola Pinzon

Producción científica: Documento de TrabajoDocumento de trabajo


Studies on informality have diversified considerably in the last few decades. Multiple discourses have emerged with the purpose of capturing the economic, social, political and geographic components of informality. However, many of them have been developed in a fragmented manner, limiting the possibility of establishing a common framework and bringing with them problems, such as the indiscriminate use of language or the trivialization of the phenomenon. This variety of uses and discourses can be grouped under the label of socioeconomic informality. Recent studies have proposed solutions and, however, to date, the problem remains open.
In response to the problem raised, this article introduces a map of socioeconomic informality that integrates, from a temporal perspective, the main research topics in informality, their relationships and relevant authors.
A graphic map of socioeconomic informality is constructed from a systematic review of the academic literature published in Scopus. Through a text mining technique, the keywords used by the authors to label their publications were extracted and counted in order to identify the most frequent terms in studies on informality. These terms were filtered, through a controlled dictionary (thesaurus), to obtain the most important research topics in socioeconomic informality. The data obtained was represented in a map that was conceptually inspired by the complexity sciences map developed by the sociologist Brian Castellani.
36 main research topics in socioeconomic informality were identified, which were grouped into four theoretical dimensions: informal economy, informal sector, informal settlements and informal institutions. The original authors for each theme, together with their contributions, were detected. Although the present study has methodological limitations related to the data sources considered, the proposed map constitutes a first approximation to the problem, whose primary purpose is to open the discussion and stimulate future developments.
Título traducido de la contribuciónThe informality map: origin and evolution of studies on socioeconomic informality
Idioma originalEspañol
Lugar de publicaciónBogotá
Número de páginas40
EstadoPublicada - 2022

Áreas temáticas de ASJC Scopus

  • Economía, Econometría y Finanzas General
  • Desarrollo
  • Ciencias sociales (miscelánea)


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