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
Brookfield, J.F. Predicting the future. Nature 2001, 411, 999.
A journal article with 2 authors
Srinivasan, M.; Ruina, A. Computer optimization of a minimal biped model discovers walking and running. Nature 2006, 439, 72–75.
A journal article with 3 authors
Powell, A.; Shennan, S.; Thomas, M.G. Late Pleistocene demography and the appearance of modern human behavior. Science 2009, 324, 1298–1301.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Voloshina, E.N.; Fertitta, E.; Garhofer, A.; Mittendorfer, F.; Fonin, M.; Thissen, A.; Dedkov, Y.S. Electronic structure and imaging contrast of graphene moiré on metals. Sci. Rep. 2013, 3, 1072.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Abid, M.M. Spacecraft Sensors; John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: Chichester, UK, 2006; ISBN 9780470865293.
An edited book
Nguyen, C. Stepped-Frequency Radar Sensors: Theory, Analysis and Design; Park, J., Ed.; SpringerBriefs in Electrical and Computer Engineering; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2016; ISBN 9783319122700.
A chapter in an edited book
El-Salhy, M.; Hatlebakk, J.G.; Hausken, T. Treatment Options Without Medication. In Understanding and Controlling the Irritable Bowel; Hatlebakk, J.G., Hausken, T., Eds.; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2015; pp. 45–63 ISBN 9783319156415.

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
Andrew, E. New Research Shows How To Trap Cancer By Turning Your Body Against The Tumour (accessed on Oct 30, 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 Title 6--NAD Electronic Signature; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1994;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Courtney, S.J. A Sea of Voices: An Alchemical Journey Through Dissociation. Doctoral dissertation, Pacifica Graduate Institute: Carpinteria, CA, 2015.

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
Walsh, M.W. Puerto Rico Debt Bill Takes Step. New York Times 2016, B3.

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