Reference list according to the Harvard system

Last changed: 10 July 2020
Long list of references, close up.

Harvard is the most common reference system at SLU. On this page you will find examples of how to write references according to the SLU Harvard style.

Harvard is a generic term for any reference style where the author and publication year is written within parenthesis, such as (Andersson 2019). There shall also be a list of references at the end of the document. Hence, there is no official manual to the Harvard style, and different disciplines, educational programs, and departments have diverse instructions for referencing. The SLU Harvard style is most common at SLU but if you are unsure what reference style you should use, ask your lecturer or supervisor.

Reference list

The reference list at the end of the document should include enough information so that anyone reading your text will be able to easily trace the sources you have used. In the Harvard style, the reference list is written in alphabetical order. What type of information you should include in each reference depends on the type of source being cited.

Below you will find a number of examples on how to write references for different types of sources. If you cannot find the resource type you are looking for, contact the SLU University Library or consult these resources:



Blog posts

References for blog posts contain the following information:

  • Author
  • Year
  • Post title
  • Blog's name - in italics
  • [Blog]
  • Date (when post was published)
  • URL – blog's address
  • [Date] you visited the site


Olsson, A. (2011). Hög avkastning är lika med bra djurvälfärd, eller hur? Forskarbloggen. [Blog]. April 18. Available at: [2012-05-15]


References for books contain the following information:

  • Author / publisher
  • Year of publication
  • Title - in italics
  • Edition (if book has been published in several editions)
  • Publisher location
  • Publisher


McDowell, L.R. (2000). Vitamins in animal and human nutrition. 2. ed. Ames: Iowa State University Press.

E-books - examples:

Usually reference for print and e-books are identical, but if you use an electronic version there are a few other pieces of information that should be included:

  • The book's location - Available at: should be written after the publisher's name. If you found the book in a database you should write the database's name here, for example Ebrary. If you found the book online write the URL.
  • The date you read the book - [Date] should come at the end of the reference.
  • If you write the book's DOI-number, no date or availability is required.

McDowell, L.R. (2000). Vitamins in animal and human nutrition. 2. ed. Ames: Iowa State University Press. Available at: Ebrary [2012-05-01]

Morey, D. (2010). Dogs: domestication and the development of a social bond. New York: Cambridge University Press. Available at: [2012-05-02]

Zatzman, G. (2012). Sustainable energy pricing. Hoboken: John Wiley.

Two or more authors - example:

Mellor, D., Patterson-Kane, E. & Stafford, K. (2009). The science of animal welfare. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.

Editor/editors - example:

If a book consists of contributions from several authors it's called an anthology. Often, authors write a chapter in a book that is then combined by one or more editors. If you have only used a single chapter in a book, you should refer to that chapter by using the reference for a chapter in a book. Otherwise, you can refer to the entire book by citing the editor/editors and placing an "ed." for editor or “eds” for editors.

Dwyer, C. (ed.) (2008). The welfare of sheep. Dordrecht: Springer.

Silverman, D.F. & Propp, K.K. (eds) (1990). The active interview. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.

Organization or authority - example:

Gentekniknämnden (1997). Konsumenterna och gentekniken. Solna: Gentekniknämnden.

Chapter in a book

It's common that books consists of contributions from several authors and perhaps you have only used a specific chapter in your work. In this case, you should only refer to the chapter you used and not the whole book. You do this by using "in" to denote that the chapter is a part of a larger work.

  • Chapter's author
  • Book's year of publication
  • Chapter title followed by "In:"
  • Book's editors
  • Book title - in italics
  • Edition (if the book has been published in several editions)
  • Publisher' location
  • Publisher
  • Page numbers


Lindberg, A. (2003). Riskvärdering och riskkommunikation. In: Ekdahl, K. & Giesecke, J. (eds) Smittskyddsboken. Lund: Studentlitteratur, pp. 99-103.

Conference proceedings

Conference proceedings are a compilation of lectures presented at a conference. Conference proceedings often have an editor and should therefore be cited like an anthology with an editor. In addition, the reference could contain the following:

  • Conference location
  • Date the conference convened
  • Available at: where you can read the proceedings if online, i.e. (URL)

If you only used a specific lecture or contribution, you should reference that particular presentation as if it were a chapter in a book, see chapter in books.


Dahlgaard Park, S.M. & Dahlgaard, J.J. (eds) (2001). Building people and organisational excellence. Proceedings of the 4th International QMOD Conference. Linköpings Universitet 12-14 September, 2001, Sweden.

Data citation

Data citation means to refer to a published set of research data in the same way as, for example, bibliographic references to journal articles, reports and other publications. A citation to the data should include sufficient information so that the correct version of the data can be found.

The citation is recommended to include (if available):

  • Source (Primary investigator/institution)
  • Title
  • Year
  • Data Archive / intermediary
  • Version
  • DOI or, URL/link [date]


Snäll, T., Mair, L., Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet & Artdatabanken (2018). Species distribution modelling data for Phellinus ferrugineofuscus. Svensk Nationell Datatjänst. Version 1.0. DOI:

Manzoor, S., Bongcam-Rudloff, E., Schnurer, A. & Müller, B. (2015). Tepidanaerobacter acetatoxydans Re1 complete genome. GenBank. Version HF563609.2. Available: [2019-03-17]


References for dissertations contain the following information:

  • Author
  • Year
  • Title - in italics
  • Diss. (dissertation)/Lic. diss. (licentiate dissertation)
  • University where dissertation is submitted
  • Publisher location (if no other publisher location is mentioned, it is the location of the university)
  • Publisher (if no other publisher is mentioned it is the university where the dissertation was submitted)


Bröjer, C. (2012). Pathobiology of avian influenza in wild bird species. Diss. Uppsala: Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet.

Limberg, L. (1998). Att söka information för att lära: en studie av samspel mellan informationssökning och lärande. Diss. Göteborgs universitet. Borås: Valfrid.


Here are information and examples on how you can refer to images according to the Harvard system.

Internet forum

References for forums contain the following information:

  • Author
  • Year
  • Post title
  • Forum's name - in italics
  • [Forum]
  • Date of post publication
  • URL/link
  • [Date] when you visited the site


Thompson, M. (2010). 78% have experienced a vendor audit in the last year. The ITAM review forum. [Forum]. December 2. Available at: [2011-06-29]

Journal article

References to journal articles are written as follows:

  • Article's author
  • Publication year
  • Title
  • Journals' title - in italics
  • Volume and if possible number in parentheses
  • Page numbers


Hawes, D.K. (1993). Marketing tourism destinations: a strategic approach. Journal of travel research, vol. 31, pp. 74-75.

If you cite an article available online, add a DOI number or URL. DOI (Digital Object Identifier) is a unique number that creates a persistent link to the article. Use the format doi:0000000/000000000000 or If the article lacks a DOI number, write the web adress (URL) and the date when you visited the site.

Online article - examples:

Mead, P.S., Slutsker, L., Dietz, V., McCaig, L.F., Bresee, J.S., Shapiro, C., Griffin, P.M. & Tauxe, R.V. (1999). Food-related illness and death in the United States. Emerging infectious diseases, vol. 5 (5), pp. 607-625. DOI: 10.3201/eid0505.990502

Bayindir, M., Bolger, F. & Say, B. (2017). An investigation of the role of some person and situation variables in multiple cue probability learning. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, vol. 70 (1), pp. 36-52. DOI:

Aydinalp, C. & Cresser, M. (2003). The background levels of heavy metals in vertisols under mediterreanean type of climate in the region of Turkey. Journal of Central European Agriculture, vol. 4 (4), pp. 289-296. Available at: [2016-11-01]


All laws and regulations are contained in the Swedish Code of Statutes (SFS). They are arranged chronologically according to their SFS number, which consists of the year and a serial number, e.g. 1944:219. There are other collections of laws and regulations that apply to certain government authorities, for example the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency's code of statutes (NFS) or the Code of Regulations of the Swedish Board of Agriculture (SJVFS).


SFS 1981:533. Lag om fiskevårdsområden. Stockholm: Näringsdepartementet

SFS 2013:1059. Förordning om kontroll av ekologisk produktion. Stockholm: Näringsdepartementet

SJVFS 2004:32. Utfärdande av pass för sällskapsdjur. Jönköping: Statens jordbruksverk


References for maps contain the following information:

  • Source, e.g. institution
  • Publication year
  • Title - in italics
  • [Cartographic material]
  • Edition (if more than one edition exists)
  • Scale
  • Publisher's location
  • Publisher
  • Series


Sveriges geologiska undersökning (2004). Sveriges berggrund från urtid till nutid. [Cartographic material]  1:1 500 000 Uppsala: Sveriges geologiska undersökning (SGU).

Lantmäteriverket (2004). Lantmäteriets terrängkarta. 25N SV, Haparanda SV  : traktens karta med hus, småvägar och stigar. [Cartographic material].  5. ed. 1:50000. Gävle: Lantmäteriet.

Digital map-example:

If you have used a digital map, the reference will look essentially the same, just add the following:

  • Where you found the map - Available at: - and the map's URL
  • [Date] when you found the map

Lantmäteriverket (2000). Gröna kartan : topografiska kartan skala 1:50 000. 25N SV, Haparanda SV. [Cartographic material]  4. ed. 1:50000. Gävle: LMV. Avaliable at: map's URL [2011-06-29]

Read more about writing references and copyright for digital maps in these recommendations (PDF, in Swedish).

Multivolume works

If the resource you are citing is part of a larger work then it is important to make clear to the reader what part of the work to which your citations refers. You do this by specifying the section or volume:

  • Chapter's author
  • Year
  • Chapter's title followed by "In:"
  • The work's publisher
  • The work's title - in italics
  • Section, volume, etc.
  • Location of publication
  • Publisher
  • Pages


Selnes, F., & Sallis, J. (2003). Promoting relationship learning. In: Egan, J. & Harker, M.J. (eds.), Relationship marketing. Vol.3. Paradigm or perspective: The future of relationship marketing. London: SAGE Publications, pp. 277-304.

Newspaper article

References for newspaper articles should follow the format below:

  • Article's author
  • Publication year
  • Title
  • Newspaper's title - in italics
  • Date


Levander, M. (1999). Stress ger fler uppsägningar. Dagens Nyheter, July 21.

Oral sources

Oral citations, i.e. references for interviews, telephone conversations, lectures, e-mails etc. can also be included in your reference list. It's important to make clear in the text that this is unpublished material, which is why you must collect these sources in a separate reference list with a heading such as "Unpublished materials or "Oral materials"."

Some instructors discourage the inclusion of oral sources in a reference list since it isn't possible for the reader to go back to the source. An alternative is to provide the source in a footnote. Regardless of the manner in which you cite the source, it is always important to ask the person for permission to quote them.

Example — use of footnote:

In the text: Smith1 says that the ...

In the footnote: 1 Thomas Smith, Professor, SLU, lecture 2019-03-01


References for pamphlets should be written as follows, if the information is available:

  • Author/Source, e.g. institution publishing the document
  • Publication year
  • Title - in italics
  • [Pamphlet] between brackets
  • Publisher's location
  • Publisher
  • Series - if applicable
  • The pamphlet's URL, if you read it online, and [Date] when you read the pamphlet


Naturvårdsverket (2015). Så bildas en nationalpark. [Pamphlet]. Stockholm: Naturvårdsverket. Available at: [2015-07-08]

Public documents

"Public documents" refers to various documents and publications produced by the government, parliament, authorities, and municipalities. This can include minutes, motions, propositions, investigations, etc.

References for public documents should be written as follows:

  • Author/Source, e.g. institution publishing the document
  • Publication year
  • Title - in italics
  • Edition (if more than one)
  • Publisher's location
  • Publisher
  • Series


Djurtransportutredningen (2003). Kännande varelser eller okänsliga varor? Stockholm: Fritzes. (Statens offentliga utredningar 2003:06).

Arbetsmarknadsutskottet (2003). Utgiftsområde 13 Arbetsmarknad. Stockholm: Sveriges Riksdag. (2002/2003:AU1).

Radio and TV programs

References to radio or TV programs are written as follows:

  • Program series - in italics
  • Year
  • Program title
  • [Medium of broadcast]
  • Who is responsible for the program
  • Date the program was broadcast


Sommar (2008). Dolph Lundgren. [Radio program]. Producer: Helena Groll. Sveriges Radio, P1 July 19.

Vetenskapens värld (2010). Världshavens försurning. [TV program]. Sveriges Television, SVT 2 March 15.

Reference work

References to reference works like encyclopedias should be written as follows, if the information is available:

  • The author of the article in the work in question
  • Year
  • Entry word
  • The name of the reference work - in italics
  • Volume
  • pages or, URL/link [date]


Hagström, B. (1989-1996). Norska. In: Nationalencyklopedin. Vol. 14, pp. 285-287.

Hagström, B. (2001). Norska. I: Nationalencyklopedin. Available at: [2001-08-20].


References to reports are written as follows, if the information is available:

  • Author
  • Publication year
  • Title - in italics
  • Series if available
  • Place of publication
  • Publisher
  • Report number
  • URL/link and [date]


Larsson, Å. (1998). Vindkraft i lokala och regionala nät: elektriska egenskaper och el-kvalitet. (Elforsk Rapport, 1998:20). Stockholm: Elforsk.

Lundqvist, P. & Nilsson, U. (2012). Människan i ekologisk produktion – perspektiven år 2002. (Lantbruk, trädgård, jordbruk, Rapportserie 2012:11). Alnarp: Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. Available at: [2012-05-18].

Reports available online - examples:

Many reports are available online as PDF. For instance, reports published at SLU are collected in Epsilon. Such references should follow the format below:

Lundqvist, P. & Nilsson, U. (2012). Människan i ekologisk produktion – perspektiven år 2002. (Lantbruk, trädgård, jordbruk, Rapportserie 2012:11). Alnarp: Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. Available at: [2012-05-18].

Secondary source

If possible, you should always refer to the original source, but occasionally this is not possible and you are forced to cite an author that refers to the original source. In the reference list you should then only refer to the material you have actually read. Depending on the what kind of publication it is, follow the example on how to refer.

Student projects

References to student projects are written as follows::

  • Author
  • Publication year
  • Title - in italics
  • Name of University where the project was written
  • Name of Department/Institution where the project was written
  • Series


Carlsson, Y. & Engerström, M. (2010). Utvärdering av equivästens användbarhet som hjälpmedel i ryttarens sitsträning. Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet. Hippologenheten/Hippologprogrammet (Fördjupningsarbete 2010: 392).

SOU - Swedish Government Official Reports

The Government sometimes works with issues requiring a thorough examination. Once the investigation is complete it is published in the series called SOU (Statens Offentliga utredningar).

Each SOU has a unique identification number consisting of a year and a sequential number, eg SOU 2012:22

  • Name of the investigation
  • Year
  • Title - in italics
  • SOU, year and number
  • Place of publication
  • Department


Rovdjursutredningen (2012). Mål för rovdjuren. (SOU 2012:22). Stockholm: Miljödepartementet.


Each table should have a brief, explanatory title above the table. Figures have their title placed below the figure which ends with a full stop. Usually you do your own table or figure but if you re-use images they need acknowledgement of a source. Keep in mind that images are usually protected by copyright and must not be published without without permission from the author.

If you want to refer to a specific table or figure write the reference as usual, but in the text you also need to refer to the page in the document where to find the table / figure.

Following example is from a journal:

  • Writer
  • Year
  • Title
  • Journal's title - in italics
  • Volume and if possible number in parentheses
  • Page numbers


McConaghy, F. F., Hales, J. R., Rose, R.J and Hodgson, D.R. (1995). Selective brain cooling in the horse during exercise and environmental heat stress. J Appl Physiol,vol.79, ss. 1849-1854.

In the main text, it may then look as follows with a reference to a specific table from the article:

.....Figure 3 indicates differences of temperature (McConaghy et al. 1995, p. 1851)...

Unpublished works

Text before it is published or when you may not be able to provide full details.


Cambell, A.G. (1986) Media manipulation: the future for British government. (Unpublished). Thesis. (PhD). Tewkesbury University

Limberg, L. (2008) Bibliotek och lärande: en het kombination. (Unpublished). [2013-02-14].


References for videos, for example a Youtube video, should be written as follows:

  • Author
  • Year
  • Video's title - in italics
  • [Video]
  • Link to the video
  • [Date] when you viewed the video


Linnaeus University Library (2007). Vad är en vetenskaplig artikel? [Video]. Available at: [2010-06-23]


When you use material you have found online it's important that you identify what it is exactly for a source. Is it a report? An article? A blog post? Or just a normal webpage? For example, if the source in question is a report from Sweden's National Food Administration you would follow the reference rules for other reports.

References for a typical webpage includes the following:

  • Author
  • Latest update
  • Site's title - in italics
  • URL or path (see example)
  • [Date] when you visited the site


Jordbruksverket (2014). Markavvattning och dagvatten. Available at:
4.7a446fa211f3c824a0e8000171076.html [2014-06-13]

Jordbruksverket (2014). Markavvattning och dagvatten.
Available at: Odling / Dränering och vatten
/ Markavvattning och dagvatten [2014-06-13]


Harvard is the most common referencesystem at SLU. This system is characterized by in-text citations that refer to a particular work by naming the source's last name and year of publication in parantheses (name, year). The concept is that readers should be able to easily locate the complete reference to the work cited in your reference list.

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