How to format your references using the Life Sciences, Society and Policy citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Life Sciences, Society and Policy. 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
Cohen MD. Economics. Learning with regret. Science. 2008 Feb 22;319(5866):1052–3.
A journal article with 2 authors
Gurao NP, Suwas S. Generalized scaling of misorientation angle distributions at meso-scale in deformed materials. Sci. Rep. 2014 Jul 10;4:5641.
A journal article with 3 authors
Roy M, Jordan TH, Pederson J. Colorado Plateau magmatism and uplift by warming of heterogeneous lithosphere. Nature. 2009 Jun 18;459(7249):978–82.
A journal article with 7 or more authors
Bouskra D, Brézillon C, Bérard M, Werts C, Varona R, Boneca IG, et al. Lymphoid tissue genesis induced by commensals through NOD1 regulates intestinal homeostasis. Nature. 2008 Nov 27;456(7221):507–10.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Davis TB. Audel Industrial Multi-Craft Mini-Ref. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2011.
An edited book
Joseph B. Paediatric Orthopaedic Diagnosis: Asking the Right Questions. Robb J, Loder RT, Torode I, editors. New Delhi: Springer India; 2015.
A chapter in an edited book
Lambert L, Keyomarsi K. Cell Cycle Deregulation in Breast Cancer: Insurmountable Chemoresistance or Achilles’ Heel? In: Yu D, Hung M-C, editors. Breast Cancer Chemosensitivity. New York, NY: Springer; 2007. p. 52–69.

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 Life Sciences, Society and Policy.

Blog post
Hale T. Dogs Have Music Preferences But Most Like To Chill With Reggae, Says Study [Internet]. IFLScience. IFLScience; 2017 [cited 2018 Oct 30]. Available from:


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. Tax Systems Modernization: Actions Underway But Management and Technical Weaknesses Not Yet Corrected. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office; 1996 Sep. Report No.: T-AIMD-96-165.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Rich DW. Examining the relationship of values-based management in performance evaluations [Doctoral dissertation]. [Scottsdale, AZ]: Northcentral University; 2009.

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
Leland J. Grandmasters to Face Off in Tiebreaker. New York Times. 2016 Nov 28;B13.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Cohen 2008).
This sentence cites two references (Cohen 2008; Gurao and Suwas 2014).

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

  • Two authors: (Gurao and Suwas 2014)
  • Three or more authors: (Bouskra et al. 2008)

About the journal

Full journal titleLife Sciences, Society and Policy
AbbreviationLife Sci. Soc. Policy
ISSN (online)2195-7819

Other styles