Citizen science surfaced as a new way of conducting research and science shops are one of the initiatives in which citizen collaboration with scientists has been most visible. These organisations provide independent and participatory support for research in response to civil society's problems/needs. Although science shops have pioneered the furthering of citizen participation, the general public is still scantly aware of their existence. This study aimed to explore that matter, identifying and analysing the literature on science shops with bibliometric techniques. Different sources of information have been consulted; namely, Web of Science and SCOPUS database; Google Scholar; CORDIS European Projects Database; and My News. The information collected from 158 documents was analysed and their main characteristics identified. A map of science shops was constructed to show existing initiatives and those mentioned in the texts. We also offer a chronology of the main milestones on the subject mentioned in the texts. The results show the importance that countries like those in Europe, especially The Netherlands, attach to these activities and it is evident that the content can be very varied, although the environmental issues are highlighted.