A State-of-the-art of Scientific Research on Disinformation


  • Gazmend Huskaj Geneva Centre for Security Policy
  • Stefan Axelsson Department of Computer and Systems Sciences




Disinformation, computational literature review, structural topic modelling, social media, trends


Technological advancements in information and communications technologies and related hardware and software have positively transformed the political, military, economic and social domains in all countries around the globe. These technologies are imperfect, and States and state-sponsored threat actors are exploiting flaws in hardware and software for various types of attacks. Furthermore, the same threat actors exploit software technologies to spread disinformation and disseminate false information to mislead public opinion. This research article reviews the discourse of the scientific community on disinformation. The purpose is to understand where the research focus lies and who the researchers are the co-authors, and the publication venues. This research article reviews the scientific literature using the computational literature review, a semi-automated review method and the structural topical modelling framework to understand trends in the research. Of 3 097 documents published in 1 700 publication venues between 1974 to 2022, 704 were analysed. The results reveal 46 topics on issues such as rumours and disinformation spread during the Covid-19 pandemic, Soviet and Russian Information Warfare, and Trolls and health-related themes and effects.