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Bibtex export: Use journal abbreviation

  • Tobias Lippert
    Tobias Lippert

    Hello everyone,
    I am writing an article for a scientific journal and refbase/bibtex is helping me a lot to manage all the citations. Unfortunately the journal requires all the citations to use the abbreviated journal name. For example I would have to write J Mol Biol instead of Journal of Molecular Biology.
    The refbase database has all the abbreviations in it, but I have found no way to export them to bibtex. Is there a way to do this?

    Thanks in advance
    Tobias Lippert

  • There is no super-easy way, no.

    BibTeX export consists of converting MODS XML to BibTeX via bibutils.  AFAIK, bibutils has no mechanism to use the journal abbreviation instead of the full publication name.  You can potentially modify includes/modsxml.inc.php to output the journal abbreviation in preference to the full journal name.

    Since abbreviations do change, I manage my own lists & use my text editor or JabRef to substitute the shortened versions in my BibTeX file.

  • Tobias Lippert
    Tobias Lippert

    I wrote an email to the bibutils author and asked him for help.

    However, the jabref hint is really useful, and helps to circumvent that problem. I am sure that more people encounter it too…
    Maybe we could post it to the "userful hints" forum. Ist that okay?

  • Feel free!


  • Anonymous


    I have found that bibutils now supports "abbreviated title". Then how about refbase?

  • It should be relatively straight forward to add support for this on a deployment-wide basis.  I'm not sure how likely it will be to add this on a per-refbase user basis anytime soon (though that would seem preferable).