How to format your references using the Requirements Engineering citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Requirements Engineering. 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
Halavais A (2011) Social science: Open up online research. Nature 480:174–175
A journal article with 2 authors
Huang ZJ, Luo L (2015) NEUROSCIENCE. It takes the world to understand the brain. Science 350:42–44
A journal article with 3 authors
Levison HF, Kretke KA, Duncan MJ (2015) Growing the gas-giant planets by the gradual accumulation of pebbles. Nature 524:322–324
A journal article with 5 or more authors
Storch K-F, Lipan O, Leykin I, et al (2002) Extensive and divergent circadian gene expression in liver and heart. Nature 417:78–83

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Mead DE (2013) Becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist. Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK
An edited book
Atallah M, Li X-Y, Zhu B (2011) Frontiers in Algorithmics and Algorithmic Aspects in Information and Management: Joint International Conference, FAW-AAIM 2011, Jinhua, China, May 28-31, 2011. Proceedings. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
A chapter in an edited book
Wachulec P, Saeed E, Bartocha A, Saeed K (2015) Iris Feature Extraction with the Influence of Its Diseases on the Results. In: Chaki R, Saeed K, Choudhury S, Chaki N (eds) Applied Computation and Security Systems: Volume One. Springer India, New Delhi, pp 49–56

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 Requirements Engineering.

Blog post
Andrew E (2014) Ozone Layer Showing Signs Of Recovery. In: IFLScience. Accessed 30 Oct 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 (1975) Information on the New Community of Soul City, North Carolina. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Kang H (2006) Essays on Methodologies in Contingent Valuation and the Sustainable Management of Common Pool Resources. Doctoral dissertation, Ohio State University

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
Ruprecht T (2010) High-School Redux. New York Times MM50

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 titleRequirements Engineering
ISSN (print)0947-3602
ISSN (online)1432-010X
ScopeInformation Systems

Other styles