How to format your references using the International Journal of General Systems citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for International Journal of General Systems. 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
Dalvit, Diego A. R. 2011. “Quantum Physics: Shaking Photons out of the Vacuum.” Nature 479 (7373): 303–304.
A journal article with 2 authors
Sieberer, Tobias, and Ottoline Leyser. 2006. “Plant Science. Auxin Transport, but in Which Direction?” Science (New York, N.Y.) 312 (5775): 858–860.
A journal article with 3 authors
Grosenick, Logan, Tricia S. Clement, and Russell D. Fernald. 2007. “Fish Can Infer Social Rank by Observation Alone.” Nature 445 (7126): 429–432.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Zhang, Xuejing, Wenbo Mi, Xiaocha Wang, Yingchun Cheng, and Udo Schwingenschlögl. 2014. “The Interface between Gd and Monolayer MoS2: A First-Principles Study.” Scientific Reports 4 (December): 7368.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
DiGrado, Brian D., and Gregory A. Thorp. 2007. The Aboveground Steel Storage Tank Handbook. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Frachtenberg, Eitan, and Uwe Schwiegelshohn, eds. 2009. Job Scheduling Strategies for Parallel Processing: 14th International Workshop, JSSPP 2009, Rome, Italy, May 29, 2009. Revised Papers. Vol. 5798. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Bruno, Roberto, and Vincenzo Carbone. 2016. “Turbulence Studied via Elsässer Variables.” In Turbulence in the Solar Wind, edited by Vincenzo Carbone, 99–151. Lecture Notes in Physics. Cham: 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 International Journal of General Systems.

Blog post
Andrew, Elise. 2015. “People Near Fracking Wells Show Higher Hospitalization Rates.” 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. 1983. [Perspectives on Evaluating Federally Sponsored Research and Development in the United States]. 122652. 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
Liu, Huiguo. 2017. “Three Papers on the Sociology of Initial Public Offerings (IPOs).” Doctoral dissertation, Bloomington, IN: Indiana University.

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
Wagner, James. 2017. “Loss to Nationals Brings Reminders of Early Season Demons.” New York Times, June 16.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Dalvit 2011).
This sentence cites two references (Dalvit 2011; Sieberer and Leyser 2006).

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

  • Two authors: (Sieberer and Leyser 2006)
  • Three authors: (Grosenick, Clement, and Fernald 2007)
  • 4 or more authors: (Zhang et al. 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titleInternational Journal of General Systems
AbbreviationInt. J. Gen. Syst.
ISSN (print)0308-1079
ISSN (online)1563-5104
ScopeComputer Science Applications
Information Systems
Control and Systems Engineering
Modelling and Simulation
Theoretical Computer Science

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