How to format your references using the Physical Communication citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Physical Communication. 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
S.T. Jackson, History of science. Alexander von Humboldt and the general physics of the Earth, Science. 324 (2009) 596–597.
A journal article with 2 authors
C.J. Woolf, S. Bloechlinger, Neuroscience. It takes more than two to Nogo, Science. 297 (2002) 1132–1134.
A journal article with 3 authors
R. Helled, E. Galanti, Y. Kaspi, Saturn’s fast spin determined from its gravitational field and oblateness, Nature. 520 (2015) 202–204.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
H.-N. Ho, D. Iwai, Y. Yoshikawa, J. Watanabe, S. Nishida, Combining colour and temperature: A blue object is more likely to be judged as warm than a red object, Sci. Rep. 4 (2014) 5527.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
S. Uribe, Frontier Road, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK, 2017.
An edited book
R. Moot, The Logic of Categorial Grammars: A Deductive Account of Natural Language Syntax and Semantics, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 2012.
A chapter in an edited book
A. Breiter, L.M. Groß, E. Stauke, Computer-Based Large-Scale Assessments in Germany, in: D. Passey, A. Breiter, A. Visscher (Eds.), Next Generation of Information Technology in Educational Management: 10th IFIP WG 3.7 Conference, ITEM 2012, Bremen, Germany, August 5-8, 2012, Revised Selected Papers, Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg, 2013: pp. 41–54.

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 Physical Communication.

Blog post
E. Andrew, Despite Shell’s About-Face, Interest In Arctic Oil Grows, IFLScience. (2015). (accessed October 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, Geographic Information System: Forest Service Not Ready to Acquire Nationwide System, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 1990.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
S. Aquino-Centeno, Contesting social memories and identities in the Zapotec Sierra of Oaxaca, Mexico, Doctoral dissertation, University of Arizona, 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
M. Kelly, Hillary Clinton Visits Capitol In Vivid Display of Her Clout, New York Times. (1993) A1.

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 titlePhysical Communication
ISSN (print)1874-4907
ScopeElectrical and Electronic Engineering

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