I'm using TeX live 2010. I have a .bib file generated from Mendeley, and I want to use that with amsrefs, but it's confusing and the amsrefs documentation is somewhat hard to follow: how do I massage the .bib file into something that amsrefs can stomach. (I'm using amsart as the document class).

  • Did you sort this out in the end?
    – Simon
    Jul 6 '11 at 15:10
  • Haven't so far. Jul 12 '11 at 7:10
  • Does it not compile? Or is it just that the output is no good?
    – Simon
    Jul 12 '11 at 8:14
  • 4
    @Owen Maresh I think a minimal working example (MWE) would be useful here.
    – Joseph Wright
    Jul 17 '11 at 11:23
  • the answer works for me - I used it on my own .bib file though. Jul 28 '17 at 11:45

As the Mendeley-generated file should be a valid .bib file then using the amsxport package (documentation on CTAN or via texdoc amsxport) should be helpful. The process is also outlined in a TUGboat article from 2000.

For example the following simple document, processed by pdflatex and then bibtex,


will produce a .bbl file with the best-effort conversion of the specified bibliography file into amsrefs format (by default it will use the amsrn style).

Looking at the first couple of entries of the input .bib and output .bbl files:

    author = "Malcolm Clark",
    title = "A {\texttt{plain}} {\TeX} primer",
    year = "1992",
    edition = "1st",
    publisher = "Oxford",
    address = "Oxford, England"

    author = {Matthias Kalle Dalheimer and Karsten G{\"u}nther},
    title = {{\LaTeX}---kurz \& gut},
    year = {2008},
    edition = {3},
    publisher = {O'Reilly},
    address = {K{\"o}ln, Deutchsland}


      author={Clark, Malcolm},
       title={A {\texttt{plain}} {\TeX} primer},
     address={Oxford, England},

      author={Dalheimer, Matthias~Kalle},
      author={G{\"u}nther, Karsten},
       title={{\LaTeX}---kurz \& gut},
     address={K{\"o}ln, Deutchsland},

Only a subset of .bib fields are supported and, of course, the output cannot be better than the input and will not initially have much of the added structure that amsrefs can support but should be a useful start.

  • I have encountered the same issue when importing a Mendeley library to be used with elsevier's harvard template. could you suggest a solution? the template file (elsarticle-harv.bst) suggests: ENTRY { address author booktitle chapter edition editor howpublished institution journal key month note number organization pages publisher school series title type url volume year }
    – Andreuccio
    Jun 21 '18 at 10:28

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