How to format your references using the Policy Sciences citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Policy Sciences. 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
Coyne, J. A. (2005). Evolution. Ernst Mayr (1904-2005). Science (New York, N.Y.), 307(5713), 1212–1213.
A journal article with 2 authors
Glazman, L. I., & Ashoori, R. C. (2004). Physics. Coupling qubits by waves on the electron sea. Science (New York, N.Y.), 304(5670), 524–525.
A journal article with 3 authors
Reiner, J. W., Walker, F. J., & Ahn, C. H. (2009). Materials science. Atomically engineered oxide interfaces. Science (New York, N.Y.), 323(5917), 1018–1019.
A journal article with 8 or more authors
Bayrakci, S. P., Keller, T., Habicht, K., & Keimer, B. (2006). Spin-wave lifetimes throughout the Brillouin zone. Science (New York, N.Y.), 312(5782), 1926–1929.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Bowling, J. (2011). Diagnostic Dermoscopy. Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
An edited book
Nof, S. Y. (Ed.). (2009). Springer Handbook of Automation. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Zerlenga, O. (2016). Federico Commandino (1509–1575). In M. Cigola (Ed.), Distinguished Figures in Descriptive Geometry and Its Applications for Mechanism Science: From the Middle Ages to the 17th Century (pp. 99–128). Cham: 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 Sciences.

Blog post
Andrew, D. (2015, August 9). What’s The Fastest (Fictional) Spaceship In The Universe? IFLScience. IFLScience. Accessed 30 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. (1993). Federal Research: Minor Changes Would Further Improve New NSF Indirect Cost Guidance (No. RCED-93-140). Washington, DC: 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
Williams, V. D. (2014). Leadership behavior practice patterns’ relationship to employee work engagement in a nonprofit that supports the homeless (Doctoral dissertation). Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA.

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
Powell, M., & Walsh, M. W. (2010, July 17). A.I.G. to Pay $725 Million In Ohio Case. New York Times, p. B1.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Coyne 2005).
This sentence cites two references (Coyne 2005; Glazman and Ashoori 2004).

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

  • Two authors: (Glazman and Ashoori 2004)
  • Three or more authors: (Bayrakci et al. 2006)

About the journal

Full journal titlePolicy Sciences
AbbreviationPolicy Sci.
ISSN (print)0032-2687
ISSN (online)1573-0891
ScopeManagement, Monitoring, Policy and Law
General Social Sciences
Sociology and Political Science
Public Administration

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