How to format your references using the IFAC Journal of Systems and Control citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for IFAC Journal of Systems and Control. 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
Marx, V. (2015). Cancer: A most exceptional response. Nature, 520(7547), 389–393.
A journal article with 2 authors
van Opstal, E. J., & Bordenstein, S. R. (2015). MICROBIOME. Rethinking heritability of the microbiome. Science (New York, N.Y.), 349(6253), 1172–1173.
A journal article with 3 authors
Zehn, D., Lee, S. Y., & Bevan, M. J. (2009). Complete but curtailed T-cell response to very low-affinity antigen. Nature, 458(7235), 211–214.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Kalir, S., McClure, J., Pabbaraju, K., Southward, C., Ronen, M., Leibler, S., Surette, M. G., & Alon, U. (2001). Ordering genes in a flagella pathway by analysis of expression kinetics from living bacteria. Science (New York, N.Y.), 292(5524), 2080–2083.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Happer, W., Jau, Y.-Y., & Walker, T. (2010). Optically Pumped Atoms. Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA.
An edited book
Ibrahimbegovic, A., & Kozar, I. (Eds.). (2007). Extreme Man-Made and Natural Hazards in Dynamics of Structures. Springer Netherlands.
A chapter in an edited book
Escalante, H. J., Montes, M., & Sucar, L. E. (2008). Improving Automatic Image Annotation Based on Word Co-occurrence. In N. Boujemaa, M. Detyniecki, & A. Nürnberger (Eds.), Adaptive Multimedia Retrieval: Retrieval, User, and Semantics: 5th International Workshop, AMR 2007, Paris, France, July 5-6, 2007 Revised Selected Papers (pp. 57–70). 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 IFAC Journal of Systems and Control.

Blog post
Andrew, E. (2014, September 1). NASA Tests 3D Printed Rocket Parts. 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. (1982). Regulatory Effects on R&D Are Better Assessed As Part of the Innovation Process (PAD-82-1). 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
Wignall, J. (2013). No longer in the shadows: Identity, citizenship, and belonging among undocumented college students in Southern California [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
Crane, A. T., & Hay, G. (2010, November 25). All Is Sparkly For Tiffany. New York Times, B2.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Marx, 2015).
This sentence cites two references (Marx, 2015; van Opstal & Bordenstein, 2015).

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

  • Two authors: (van Opstal & Bordenstein, 2015)
  • Three authors: (Zehn et al., 2009)
  • 6 or more authors: (Kalir et al., 2001)

About the journal

Full journal titleIFAC Journal of Systems and Control
ISSN (print)2468-6018

Other styles