How to format your references using the Carbon citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Carbon. 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.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
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
F.M. Orr Jr, Onshore geologic storage of CO2, Science. 325 (2009) 1656–1658.
A journal article with 2 authors
Y. Frégnac, G. Laurent, Neuroscience: Where is the brain in the Human Brain Project?, Nature. 513 (2014) 27–29.
A journal article with 3 authors
S.-K. Chen, T.C. Badea, S. Hattar, Photoentrainment and pupillary light reflex are mediated by distinct populations of ipRGCs, Nature. 476 (2011) 92–95.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
C. Neyt, K. Jagla, C. Thisse, B. Thisse, L. Haines, P.D. Currie, Evolutionary origins of vertebrate appendicular muscle, Nature. 408 (2000) 82–86.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
S. Kromidas, Der HPLC-Experte, Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH, D-69451 Weinheim, Germany, 2014.
An edited book
M. Scaglione, La TCMD nel trauma ad elevata energia, Springer, Milano, 2012.
A chapter in an edited book
M. Baronti, F. De Mari, R. van der Putten, I. Venturi, Sequences, in: F. De Mari, R. van der Putten, I. Venturi (Eds.), Calculus Problems, Springer International Publishing, Cham, 2016: pp. 53–64.

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 Carbon.

Blog post
R. Andrews, Here’s What You Should Do If You Find A Baby Bird Out Of Its Nest, IFLScience. (2016).


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, FCC Needs To Monitor a Changing International Telecommunications Market, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1983.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
J.L. Boyd, Interactive simulations: Improving learning retention in knowledge-based online training courses, Doctoral dissertation, Capella University, 2017.

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
S.M. Novick, As Cheese or Chocolate, Comfort Comes Melted, New York Times. (2013) LI8.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleCarbon
AbbreviationCarbon N. Y.
ISSN (print)0008-6223
ScopeGeneral Chemistry

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