How to format your references using the Canadian Public Policy citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Canadian Public Policy (CPP). 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
Burke, B. 2006. “Cell biology. Nuclear pore complex models gel.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 314(5800):766–767.
A journal article with 2 authors
Wolf, A., and W. R. L. Anderegg. 2011. “Comment on ‘Changes in climatic water balance drive downhill shifts in plant species’’ optimum elevations".’” Science (New York, N.Y.) 334(6053):177; author reply 177.
A journal article with 3 authors
Johnson, S. C., P. S. Rabinovitch, and M. Kaeberlein. 2013. “mTOR is a key modulator of ageing and age-related disease.” Nature 493(7432):338–345.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Calvo, M. R., J. Fernández-Rossier, J. J. Palacios, D. Jacob, D. Natelson, and C. Untiedt. 2009. “The Kondo effect in ferromagnetic atomic contacts.” Nature 458(7242):1150–1153.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Godula-Jopek, A., W. Jehle, and J. Wellnitz. 2012. Hydrogen Storage Technologies. Weinheim, Germany: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.
An edited book
Brinksmeier, Ekkard, Oltmann Riemer, and Ralf M. Gläbe, eds. 2013. Fabrication of Complex Optical Components: From Mold Design to Product. Lecture Notes in Production Engineering. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Coronado, J. M., and M. D. Hernández-Alonso. 2013. “The Keys of Success: TiO2 as a Benchmark Photocatalyst.” In Design of Advanced Photocatalytic Materials for Energy and Environmental Applications, ed. J. M. Coronado, F. Fresno, María D. Hernández-Alonso, and R. Portela, 85–101. Green Energy and Technology. London: Springer.

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 Canadian Public Policy.

Blog post
Andrew, D. 2016. “Does A Pudgy ‘Dad Bod’ Really Make Men Live Longer? Here’s The Science.” IFLScience. IFLScience.


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. 1991. Aerospace Plane Technology: Research and Development Efforts in Japan and Australia. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Nguyen, M. S. 2009. “Solid families: Community-based program for pregnant and parenting adolescents.” Doctoral dissertation, Long Beach, CA: California State University, Long Beach.

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
Vecsey, G. 2012. “Pondering Curses at Chavez Ravine.” New York Times, April 8.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Burke 2006).
This sentence cites two references (Burke 2006; Wolf and Anderegg 2011).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Wolf and Anderegg 2011)
  • Three or more authors: (Calvo et al. 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleCanadian Public Policy
AbbreviationCan. Public Policy
ISSN (print)0317-0861
ScopeSociology and Political Science
Public Administration

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