In the bibliography of my electrical engineering PhD thesis, I have some entries for articles which were presented orally in the workshop of a conference (but not in the main conference track). I would like to cite both the name of the workshop, and the name of the main conference. I'm using BibLaTeX and classicthesis. So far, I used @InProceedings entries with the following fields (example):

    title = article_title,
    author = list_of_authors,
    booktitle = name_of_main_conference,
    series = name_of_workshop,
    year = the_year,

In particular, I wonder if I'm using the booktitle and series fields correctly according to the "convention", if there is one.

EDIT: for example, I have defined the following.

    author = {Smith, John},
    booktitle = {European Conference on Life},
    series = {Workshop on the Meaning of 42},
    title = {{Great Article}},
    year = {2016}

which is typeset as follows, using BibLaTeX style=ieee:

[12] J. Smith, “Great Article”, in European Conference on Life, ser. Workshop on the Meaning of 42, 2016.

I don't particularly like the ser. part, hence my original question.

  • 1
    You could use booksubtitle instead of series. Or maintitle and booktitle, it depends on what output you prefer and how 'European Conference on Life' relates to 'Workshop on the Meaning of 42'. Of course this still is an abuse of @inproceedings if the article was not actually published. Is there any way people can get hold of the article? (For example online.) An answer also depends on what kind of reference list you prepare. For a CV you would probably want the conference listed. For a normal bibliography it would be enough to just give enough info to locate the source.
    – moewe
    Jul 7, 2017 at 16:05
  • Thanks! Yes, people can get hold of the article by googling the title and downloading the freely-available pdf. Jul 7, 2017 at 18:04

1 Answer 1


Technically, @inproceedings is only the correct entry type if the article did in fact appear in the official conference proceedings. You can of course still (ab)use it.

  author    = {Smith, Jane},
  title     = {{Great Article}},
  year      = {2016},
  maintitle = {European Conference on Life},
  booktitle = {Workshop on the Meaning of 42},

You could use booktitle and maintitle to format the conference and workshop information as shown above, or booktitle and booksubtitle as shown below

  booktitle    = {European Conference on Life},
  booksubtitle = {Workshop on the Meaning of 42},

I prefer the maintitle/booktitle approach, but that is probably a matter of taste.

If the conference name and workshop make it not significantly easier to find the article and you don't have to include them for other reasons (you might want to show them in a CV, grant application, ...), you could also drop the info and only show what is really important to locate the article. If it has a URL,

  author    = {Smith, Jane},
  title     = {{Great Article}},
  year      = {2016},
  url       = {http://example.ed/~smith/great2006},
  urldate   = {2017-07-08},

might well be enough.

  • Thanks again. I went with the maintitle/booktitle approach - which, in the case of \documentclass[conference]{IEEEtran}, produces identical results to the booktitle/booksubtitle approach. With certain documentclasses the results differ. At the end of the day, it depends on the order that I want to show in the produced document (order between main conference name and workshop name). I'd like to see a convention on this, but workshops are by nature unofficial/side events, with no proper proceedings... Jul 10, 2017 at 11:38
  • It seems like the maintitle is not shown, if using the article class with bibtex styles "unsrt" "plain" or "apalike". "booksubtitle" is also not recognized. Can anyone edit the question to explain how to expose these features?
    – MRule
    Feb 8, 2022 at 9:29
  • 1
    @MRule The styles you mention are BibTeX styles, whereas the question (and the answer!) is about biblatex. The classical BibTeX styles you mention do not know maintitle or booksubtitle.
    – moewe
    Feb 8, 2022 at 10:50
  • I see, I see! (and it seems very hard to do this with bibtex).
    – MRule
    Feb 9, 2022 at 11:05

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