This article discusses the growing body of research on nation branding, arguing for an expanded critical research agenda on this topic. It begins with an extensive overview of scholarly writing on nation branding, based on 186 sources across disciplines. The discussion organizes the sources in three categories, teasing out key themes within and across them. Second, the article proposes a reflexive conceptual map which identifies four types of research orientations across disciplines. Finally, some directions for future critical research on nation branding and its implications are outlined. The ultimate goal of this mapping exercise is to stimulate more work informed by critical theories on the global phenomenon of nation branding.