How to format your references using the Water Alternatives citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Water Alternatives. 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
Nutman, A.P. 2006. Comment on “Zircon thermometer reveals minimum melting conditions on earliest Earth” II. Science (New York, N.Y.) 311(5762): 779; author reply 779.
A journal article with 2 authors
Olivera, B.M. and Teichert, R.W. 2011. Neuroscience: chemical ecology of pain. Nature 479(7373): 306–307.
A journal article with 3 authors
Sowers, T.; Alley, R.B. and Jubenville, J. 2003. Ice core records of atmospheric N2O covering the last 106,000 years. Science (New York, N.Y.) 301(5635): 945–948.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Branquinho, L.C.; Carrião, M.S.; Costa, A.S.; Zufelato, N.; Sousa, M.H.; Miotto, R.; Ivkov, R. and Bakuzis, A.F. 2013. Effect of magnetic dipolar interactions on nanoparticle heating efficiency: implications for cancer hyperthermia. Scientific reports 3: 2887.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Sillar, K.T.; Picton, L.D. and Heitler, W.J. 2016. The Neuroethology of Predation and Escape. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
An edited book
Scales, D.C. and Rubenfeld, G.D. (Eds). 2014. The Organization of Critical Care: An Evidence-Based Approach to Improving Quality. Respiratory Medicine 18. New York, NY: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Perelman, Y. and Ginosar, R. 2008. NPR03: Mixed-Signal Integrated Front-End for Neuronal Recording. In Ginosar, R. (Ed), The NeuroProcessor: An Integrated Interface to Biological Neural Networks, pp. 39–67. Dordrecht: Springer Netherlands.

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 Water Alternatives.

Blog post
Andrew, E. 2014. Scientific Origins of Vampirism. 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. 1981. Comments on S. 881 and GAO Report on Small-Business Innovation Initiatives. 115776. 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
Seip, N. 2009. A one day training on the human papillomavirus for foster youth receiving independent living services: A grant proposal. Doctoral dissertation. California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, 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
Detrick, B. 2016. The Vnyl. New York Times. 26 October 2016.

In-text citations

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

This sentence cites one reference (Nutman, 2006).
This sentence cites two references (Nutman, 2006; Olivera and Teichert, 2011).

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

  • Two authors: (Olivera and Teichert, 2011)
  • Three or more authors: (Branquinho et al., 2013)

About the journal

Full journal titleWater Alternatives
ISSN (online)1965-0175

Other styles