How to format your references using the Advances in Complex Systems citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Advances in Complex Systems. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Schiermeier, Q., NATO reform promises more publicity for less science, Nature 422 (2003) 248.
A journal article with 2 authors
Keesing, F., and Ostfeld, R. S., Ecology. Is biodiversity good for your health?, Science 349 (2015) 235–236.
A journal article with 3 authors
Hedde, P. N., Stakic, M., and Gratton, E., Rapid measurement of molecular transport and interaction inside living cells using single plane illumination, Sci. Rep. 4 (2014) 7048.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Verma, R., Aravind, L., Oania, R., McDonald, W. H., Yates, J. R., 3rd, Koonin, E. V., et al., Role of Rpn11 metalloprotease in deubiquitination and degradation by the 26S proteasome, Science 298 (2002) 611–615.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Huang, H. K., PACS and Imaging Informatics, (John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ, 2005).
An edited book
Melin, P., Castillo, O., and Kacprzyk, J. (Eds.), Design of Intelligent Systems Based on Fuzzy Logic, Neural Networks and Nature-Inspired Optimization, (Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2015).
A chapter in an edited book
Liu, Z., Palpitation of Heart, in Essentials of Chinese Medicine: Essentials of Clinical Specialties in Chinese Medicine, ed. Liu, Z., (Springer, London, 2009), pp. 45–54.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Advances in Complex Systems.

Blog post
Andrew, E., Scientists are Working on Developing a Star-Trek Style Replicator, IFLScience (2015).


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office, Mobile Devices: Federal Agencies’ Steps to Improve Mobile Access to Government Information and Services, (U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 2014).

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Britigan, D. H., Health information sources and health literacy levels of Latinos in a midwestern tri -state area, Doctoral dissertation, University of Cincinnati, (2009).

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Kinsley, M., Can There Be Nothing Good to Say?, New York Times (2017) SR2.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [2].
This sentence cites two references [3,4].
This sentence cites four references [4–6,8].

About the journal

Full journal titleAdvances in Complex Systems
AbbreviationAdv. Complex Syst.
ISSN (print)0219-5259
ISSN (online)1793-6802
ScopeControl and Systems Engineering

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