How to format your references using the Research Policy citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Research Policy. 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
Sherwood, S., 2002. A microphysical connection among biomass burning, cumulus clouds, and stratospheric moisture. Science 295, 1272–1275.
A journal article with 2 authors
Cai, H.N., Shen, P., 2001. Effects of cis arrangement of chromatin insulators on enhancer-blocking activity. Science 291, 493–495.
A journal article with 3 authors
Grbic, A., Jiang, L., Merlin, R., 2008. Near-field plates: subdiffraction focusing with patterned surfaces. Science 320, 511–513.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Mattsson, J., Wyss, H.M., Fernandez-Nieves, A., Miyazaki, K., Hu, Z., Reichman, D.R., Weitz, D.A., 2009. Soft colloids make strong glasses. Nature 462, 83–86.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Goldstein, L.S.B., Schneider, M., 2010. Stem Cells for Dummies®. Wiley Publishing, Inc., Hoboken, NJ.
An edited book
Liu, K.-K., Atkinson, L., Quiñones, R., Talaue-McManus, L. (Eds.), 2010. Carbon and Nutrient Fluxes in Continental Margins: A Global Synthesis, 1st ed, Global Change – The IGBP Series. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.
A chapter in an edited book
Gilbert, R.J.C., 2010. Cholesterol-Dependent Cytolysins, in: Anderluh, G., Lakey, J. (Eds.), Proteins Membrane Binding and Pore Formation, Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology. Springer, New York, NY, pp. 56–66.

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 Research Policy.

Blog post
Carpineti, A., 2016. Fast Radio Bursts Also Produce Huge Gamma-Ray Flares [WWW Document]. IFLScience. URL (accessed 10.30.18).


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, 1991. Airline Competition: Industry Competitive and Financial Problems (No. T-RCED-91-89). 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
Choi, Y., 2012. Three essays on econometrics (Doctoral dissertation). Indiana University, Bloomington, IN.

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
Saslow, L., 2007. Do Ankle Bracelets Work? Here’s One Way to Find Out. New York Times 14LI2.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Sherwood, 2002).
This sentence cites two references (Cai and Shen, 2001; Sherwood, 2002).

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

  • Two authors: (Cai and Shen, 2001)
  • Three or more authors: (Mattsson et al., 2009)

About the journal

Full journal titleResearch Policy
AbbreviationRes. Policy
ISSN (print)0048-7333
ScopeManagement of Technology and Innovation
Strategy and Management
Management Science and Operations Research

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