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

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Policy and Society. 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
Smaglik, P. (2001). Pharmacogenetics initiative galvanizes public and private sectors. Nature, 410(6826), 393–394.
A journal article with 2 authors
Dominguez-Villar, M., & Hafler, D. A. (2011). Immunology. An innate role for IL-17. Science (New York, N.Y.), 332(6025), 47–48.
A journal article with 3 authors
Ellis, A. S., Johnson, T. M., & Bullen, T. D. (2002). Chromium isotopes and the fate of hexavalent chromium in the environment. Science (New York, N.Y.), 295(5562), 2060–2062.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Chen, W., Liu, J., Zhang, L., Xu, H., Guo, X., Deng, S., Liu, L., Yu, D., Chen, Y., & Li, Z. (2014). Generation of the SCN1A epilepsy mutation in hiPS cells using the TALEN technique. Scientific Reports, 4, 5404.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Bliesner, D. M. (2006). Establishing a CGMP Laboratory Audit System. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Levy, R. A., & Ablon, J. S. (Eds.). (2009). Handbook of Evidence-Based Psychodynamic Psychotherapy: Bridging the Gap Between Science and Practice. Humana Press.
A chapter in an edited book
Halder, P. (2015). An Overview of Science Teachers’ Knowledge of Bioenergy and the Need for Future Research: A Case from India. In I. Dincer, C. O. Colpan, O. Kizilkan, & M. A. Ezan (Eds.), Progress in Clean Energy, Volume 2: Novel Systems and Applications (pp. 59–64). Springer International Publishing.

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 Policy and Society.

Blog post
Andrew, D. (2016, September 22). We Need Clear Rules To Avoid A Real Star Wars In Outer Space. IFLScience; IFLScience.


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. (2010). Surface Transportation Security: TSA Has Taken Actions to Manage Risk, Improve Coordination, and Measure Performance, but Additional Actions Would Enhance Its Efforts (GAO-10-650T). U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Allen, S. D. (2014). Putting out fires: How communication professionals understand and practice conflict resolution [Doctoral dissertation]. University of Maryland, College Park.

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
Wagner, J. (2016, October 27). Cubs Pull Even as the Indians’ Play Proves Sloppier Than the Weather. New York Times, B13.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Smaglik, 2001).
This sentence cites two references (Dominguez-Villar & Hafler, 2011; Smaglik, 2001).

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

  • Two authors: (Dominguez-Villar & Hafler, 2011)
  • Three authors: (Ellis et al., 2002)
  • 6 or more authors: (Chen et al., 2014)

About the journal

Full journal titlePolicy and Society
AbbreviationPolicy Soc.
ISSN (print)1449-4035
ScopeSociology and Political Science
Political Science and International Relations
Public Administration

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