Talent selection research in sports and business. A citation network analysis


Sports and business organizations share a common goal of selecting talents. The increasing importance of valid predictors and methods has led to a growing body of literature in both fields. Drawing from extensive research in business, there is potential for this knowledge to support talent selection in sports (Lievens et al., 2021) as both derive from giftedness literature (Gagné, 2004). To examine the utilization of information from business in sports, we aimed to assess the interconnectivity, either directly or indirectly via different disciplines within general psychology. We included all articles from SCOPUS and WebOfScience databases (n = 20,492). Following PRISMA guidelines (Page et al., 2021), a citation network analysis was performed (n = 940). The findings revealed limited cross-referencing (n=6). In sports, citations from business were primarily related to talent definition, skills assessment, and methodological considerations (Johnston et al., 2018; Den Hartigh et al., 2018; Bergkamp et al., 2019). Conversely, business utilized sports research as illustrative examples or specific aspects of talent development models (Finkelstein et al., 2018; Terpstra et al., 2000; Nijs et al., 2014). This study highlights potential areas of convergence, including job/requirement analysis, skills assessment, and research on predictive validity, where valuable insights from the business domain could be applied to enhance talent selection in sports. Research should systematically investigate these salient topics in both domains, identifying areas that require further exploration in sports. By leveraging the differences and similarities between both, the integration of knowledge has the potential to optimize talent selection processes in sports.