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
Paytan, A., Geochemistry. Mountains, weathering, and climate, Science 335 (2012) 810–811.
A journal article with 2 authors
Leek, J. T., and Peng, R. D., Statistics. What is the question?, Science 347 (2015) 1314–1315.
A journal article with 3 authors
Samokhvalov, A. V., Shekhter, R. I., and Buzdin, A. I., Stimulation of a singlet superconductivity in SFS weak links by spin-exchange scattering of cooper pairs, Sci. Rep. 4 (2014) 5671.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Macbeth, M. R., Schubert, H. L., Vandemark, A. P., Lingam, A. T., Hill, C. P., and Bass, B. L., Inositol hexakisphosphate is bound in the ADAR2 core and required for RNA editing, Science 309 (2005) 1534–1539.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Kassapoglou, C., Modeling the Effect of Damage in Composite Structures, (John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK, 2015).
An edited book
Berbari, A., and Mancia, G. (Eds.), Arterial Disorders: Definition, Clinical Manifestations, Mechanisms and Therapeutic Approaches, (Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2015).
A chapter in an edited book
Agneessens, F., and Koskinen, J., Modeling Individual Outcomes Using a Multilevel Social Influence (MSI) Model: Individual Versus Team Effects of Trust on Job Satisfaction in an Organisational Context, in Multilevel Network Analysis for the Social Sciences: Theory, Methods and Applications, eds. Lazega, E., and Snijders, T. A. B., (Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2016), pp. 81–105.

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
Davis, J., Honeybees Make Adorable “Whooping” Noise When They Get Startled, IFLScience (2017).


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, Batteries and Energy Storage: Federal Initiatives Supported Similar Technologies and Goals but Had Key Differences, (U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 2012).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Webber, N. T., Peptide ion conformation studies and the 157 nm photofragmentation of arginine containing dipeptides, Doctoral dissertation, Indiana University, (2012).

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
Greenhill, K. M., Don’t Dumb Down the Army, New York Times (2006) A23.

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 [3,8,5,7].

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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