How to format your references using the Futures citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Futures. 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
Behnia, K. (2008). Physics. Elemental complexity. Science (New York, N.Y.), 321(5888), 497–498.
A journal article with 2 authors
Verhulst, S., & Tinbergen, J. M. (2001). Variation in food supply, time of breeding, and energy expenditure in birds. Science (New York, N.Y.), 294(5542), 471.
A journal article with 3 authors
Furlong, K. P., Lay, T., & Ammon, C. J. (2009). A great earthquake rupture across a rapidly evolving three-plate boundary. Science (New York, N.Y.), 324(5924), 226–229.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Gomes, R., Levison, H. F., Tsiganis, K., & Morbidelli, A. (2005). Origin of the cataclysmic Late Heavy Bombardment period of the terrestrial planets. Nature, 435(7041), 466–469.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Pilot, M. J. (2014). Driving Sustainability to Business Success. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Ziviani, N., & Baeza-Yates, R. (Eds.). (2007). String Processing and Information Retrieval: 14th International Symposium, SPIRE 2007 Santiago, Chile, October 29-31, 2007 Proceedings (Vol. 4726). Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Manfredi, G., Devy, M., & Sidobre, D. (2015). Textured Object Recognition: Balancing Model Robustness and Complexity. In G. Azzopardi & N. Petkov (Eds.), Computer Analysis of Images and Patterns: 16th International Conference, CAIP 2015, Valletta, Malta, September 2-4, 2015 Proceedings, Part I (pp. 52–63). Springer International Publishing.

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 Futures.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2014, May 7). New Tyrannosaur Nicknamed “Pinocchio rex” Discovered In China. 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. (1990). Serious Shortcomings in FAA’s Training Program Must Be Remedied (T-RCED-90-86). 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
Oparnica, D. (2013). The role of nurses in health care reform: A project report [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, A. L. (1999, June 13). For Employed Moms, the Pinnacle Of Stress Comes After Work Ends. New York Times, 1518.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Behnia, 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Behnia, 2008; Verhulst & Tinbergen, 2001).

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

  • Two authors: (Verhulst & Tinbergen, 2001)
  • Three authors: (Furlong et al., 2009)
  • 6 or more authors: (Gomes et al., 2005)

About the journal

Full journal titleFutures
ISSN (print)0016-3287
ScopeBusiness and International Management
Sociology and Political Science

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