How to format your references using the Laws citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Laws. 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
Macilwain, C. Ocean Researchers Dive to Deep-Sea Stations. Nature 2000, 406, 449.
A journal article with 2 authors
van der Zwaag, D.; Meijer, E.W. SELF-ORGANIZATION. Fueling Connections between Chemistry and Biology. Science 2015, 349, 1056–1057.
A journal article with 3 authors
Sharp, D.J.; Rogers, G.C.; Scholey, J.M. Microtubule Motors in Mitosis. Nature 2000, 407, 41–47.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Güdde, J.; Rohleder, M.; Meier, T.; Koch, S.W.; Höfer, U. Time-Resolved Investigation of Coherently Controlled Electric Currents at a Metal Surface. Science 2007, 318, 1287–1291.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Stanoyevitch, A. Introduction to Numerical Ordinary and Partial Differential Equations Using MATLAB®; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.: Hoboken, NJ, 2004; ISBN 9781118033326.
An edited book
The Norwegian Language in the Digital Age: Nynorskversjon; Rehm, G., Uszkoreit, H., Eds.; White Paper Series; Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg, 2012; ISBN 9783642314322.
A chapter in an edited book
Liang, Y.; Naqvi, S.M.; Wang, W.; Chambers, J.A. Frequency Domain Blind Source Separation Based on Independent Vector Analysis with a Multivariate Generalized Gaussian Source Prior. In Blind Source Separation: Advances in Theory, Algorithms and Applications; Naik, G.R., Wang, W., Eds.; Signals and Communication Technology; Springer: Berlin, Heidelberg, 2014; pp. 131–150 ISBN 9783642550157.

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 Laws.

Blog post
Hale, T. You Can Now Take A Driverless Uber In The US Available online: (accessed on 30 October 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 Internet Protocol Version 6: Federal Government in Early Stages of Transition and Key Challenges Remain; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 2006;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Kuang, S.-Y.H. “And the War Came”: A Memorial to Devastated Lives. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach: Long Beach, CA, 2010.

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, M. Man in the News; A Master of the Image: David Richmond Gergen. New York Times 1993, 122.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1,2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleLaws
ISSN (online)2075-471X

Other styles