How to format your references using the Nature Geoscience citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Nature Geoscience. 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
Schaechter, M. Retrospective. Lynn Margulis (1938-2011). Science 335, 302 (2012).
A journal article with 2 authors
Mesmin, B. & Antonny, B. Cell biology. Vitamin currency in a lipid exchange market. Science 340, 1051–1052 (2013).
A journal article with 3 authors
Walsh, J. P., Cohen, W. M. & Arora, A. Science and the law. Working through the patent problem. Science 299, 1021 (2003).
A journal article with 6 or more authors
Navarro, L. et al. A plant miRNA contributes to antibacterial resistance by repressing auxin signaling. Science 312, 436–439 (2006).

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Owen, J. S. & Fiedler-Kelly, J. Introduction to Population Pharmacokinetic / Pharmacodynamic Analysis with Nonlinear Mixed Effects Models. (John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2014).
An edited book
The Biopolitics of Development: Reading Michel Foucault in the Postcolonial Present. (Springer India, 2013).
A chapter in an edited book
Greiner, A. & Fincke, B. Productive Government Spending, Public Debt and Growth. in Public Debt, Sustainability and Economic Growth: Theory and Empirics (ed. Fincke, B.) 147–203 (Springer International Publishing, 2015).

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 Nature Geoscience.

Blog post
Davis, J. Sharks’ Ability To Hunt Could Be Altered Under Climate Change. IFLScience (2015). Available at: (Accessed: 30th 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. Opportunity To Reduce Costs Substantially In Acquiring Teletypewriters For Use In The Advanced Record System Communications Network. (U.S. Government Printing Office, 1968).

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Roberts, J. E. Process evaluation of the Instant Word Notebook. (Lindenwood University, 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
Pilon, M. Catching a Running Partner at the Trials,With a Chance to Pass. New York Times B11 (2012).

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

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 titleNature Geoscience
AbbreviationNat. Geosci.
ISSN (print)1752-0894
ISSN (online)1752-0908
ScopeGeneral Earth and Planetary Sciences

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