How to format your references using the Contemporary Accounting Research citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Contemporary Accounting Research (CAR). 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
Lazar, M. A. 2008. “Developmental biology. How now, brown fat?” Science (New York, N.Y.) 321 (5892): 1048–49.
A journal article with 2 authors
Swirski, F. K., and M. Nahrendorf. 2013. “Leukocyte behavior in atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, and heart failure.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 339 (6116): 161–66.
A journal article with 3 authors
Baughman, R. H., A. A. Zakhidov, and W. A. de Heer. 2002. “Carbon nanotubes--the route toward applications.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 297 (5582): 787–92.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Prodan, E., C. Radloff, N. J. Halas, and P. Nordlander. 2003. “A hybridization model for the plasmon response of complex nanostructures.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 302 (5644): 419–22.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Dimond, B. 2008. Legal Aspects of Mental Capacity. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
An edited book
Kryszkiewicz, M., H. Rybinski, A. Skowron, and Z. W. Raś, eds. 2011. Foundations of Intelligent Systems: 19th International Symposium, ISMIS 2011, Warsaw, Poland, June 28-30, 2011. Proceedings. Vol. 6804. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Yampolskiy, R. V., J. D. Rebolledo-Mendez, and M. M. Hindi. 2014. “Password Protected Visual Cryptography via Cellular Automaton Rule 30.” In Transactions on Data Hiding and Multimedia Security IX: Special Issue on Visual Cryptography, edited by Y. Q. Shi, F. Liu, and W. Yan, 57–67. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin, Heidelberg: 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 Contemporary Accounting Research.

Blog post
Davis, J. 2016. “New Technique To Analyze Venom For Medicinal Properties.” IFLScience. IFLScience, May 25, 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. 2007. “Underinflated Tires in the United States.” GAO-07-246R. 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
Schmisseur, B. E. 2002. “An Evaluation of Noise Reduction Effectiveness in Four Digital Hearing Aids.” Doctoral dissertation, Cincinnati, OH: University of Cincinnati.

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
Feeney, K. 2007. “Beachfront Cafe.” New York Times, September 9, 2007.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Lazar 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Lazar 2008; Swirski and Nahrendorf 2013).

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

  • Two authors: (Swirski and Nahrendorf 2013)
  • Three or more authors: (Prodan et al. 2003)

About the journal

Full journal titleContemporary Accounting Research
ISSN (online)1911-3846

Other styles