How to format your references using the Ecological Processes citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Ecological Processes. 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
Smaglik P (2004) On the road. Nature 427:85
A journal article with 2 authors
Armitage BA, Berget PB (2008) Chemistry. An enlightening structure-function relationship. Science 319:1195–1196
A journal article with 3 authors
Dixon E, Shapiro A, Lu Z-L (2014) Scale-invariance in brightness illusions implicates object-level visual processing. Sci Rep 4:3900
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Yamashita J, Itoh H, Hirashima M, et al (2000) Flk1-positive cells derived from embryonic stem cells serve as vascular progenitors. Nature 408:92–96

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Feyel P (2013) Loop-shaping Robust Control. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Hoboken, NJ USA
An edited book
Ruggieri F (ed) (2014) Criminal Proceedings, Languages and the European Union: Linguistic and Legal Issues. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
A chapter in an edited book
Angluin D, Aspnes J, Eisenstat D (2007) A Simple Population Protocol for Fast Robust Approximate Majority. In: Pelc A (ed) Distributed Computing: 21st International Symposium, DISC 2007, Lemesos, Cyprus, September 24-26, 2007. Proceedings. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, pp 20–32

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 Ecological Processes.

Blog post
Andrew D (2016) The Average Thanksgiving Dinner Is Around 2,500 calories. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 2018


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 (1993) High Speed Ground Transportation: Financial Barriers to Development. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Salazar A (2012) Small school, big gains: A case study of urban high school reform. Doctoral dissertation, 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
Kelly K (1999) Children’s Books. New York Times 737

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Smaglik 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Smaglik 2004; Armitage and Berget 2008).

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

  • Two authors: (Armitage and Berget 2008)
  • Three or more authors: (Yamashita et al. 2000)

About the journal

Full journal titleEcological Processes
AbbreviationEcol. Process.
ISSN (online)2192-1709

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