Depending on the number of authors of a publication, I would like to get labels used by the "bibstyle=alphabetic" option and inline-citations to look like this:

One author -> [Doe 2016]

Two authors -> [Doe1/Doe2 2016]

Three or more authors-> [Doe1 et al. 2016]

I tried to implement this using \DeclareLabelalphaTemplate, but since it does not seem to support conditional expressions, did not succed.

This is what I got so far:


  author = {Firstname1 Lastname1},
  title = {One Author},
  year = {2001},
  author = {Firstname1 Lastname1 and Firstname2 Lastname2},
  title = {Two Authors},
  year = {2002},
  author = {Firstname1 Lastname1 and Firstname2 Lastname2 and Firstname3 Lastname3},
  title = {Three Authors},
  year = {2003},



\renewcommand{\labelalphaothers}{\addspace et al.} %use et al. for more than maxcitenames=2 authors




Using biblatex v3.3 and biber 2.4, this gives

enter image description here

which is clearly not as I have hoped for. Any advice would be really appreciated!

  • Can't you just use style=authoryear, instead of bibstyle=alphabetic, citestyle=alphabetic,? – moewe Mar 7 '16 at 17:52
  • Wish that I could, but I need the labels and bracketed inline citations (see edit). – jamieil Mar 7 '16 at 17:59
  • You can get bracketed citations if you define a command analogous to \parencite, see \renewcommand \cite[99]{Turing} vs. \cite{Turing}. You can even the block in the bibliography: Adding an AuthorYear block at the beginning of bibliography entries. – moewe Mar 7 '16 at 18:04
  • 1
    This isn't possible with label templates - you can't insert a character between names in a name list. I will probably add this as an option in the next dev release shortly. – PLK Mar 8 '16 at 0:06
  • That would come in really handy! Any chance that this will have happened by the end of march? Otherwise, I would try moewe's approach and see where I can get. – jamieil Mar 8 '16 at 6:40

With biblatex 3.4/biber 2.5 (now in developement folder on Sourceforge), simply do this:

\usepackage[style=alphabetic, maxalphanames=2, minalphanames=1]{biblatex}

\renewcommand{\labelalphaothers}{\addspace et al.}


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