I am writing a thesis document in Latex, for the moment I am using Overleaf program.

I am figuring out how could I have my reference list in the following way with the Authors sorted in alphabetical order. I tried all the possible options I found in this forum and others, but couldn't reach to my target.

Reference list style wanted

I am using author-year citation style as shown below (Due to the big amount of packages I didn't put all the preamble, if any other kind of packages are needed to understand or fix my problem tell me):


I tried to edit style=author year using the code proposed in question: Creating a bibliography with fixed indention and authoryear labels using biblatex and biber

I copy/paste the code I used:

\setlength{\bibitemsep}{0.5\baselineskip plus 0.5\baselineskip}




With this, what I obtain in the bibliography is closer to want I want, but still I need to do some changes: What I get in bibliography

However I am quite new in the fact of changing predifined styles I am not able to understand all this code and make a change in it.

  • How can I add brackets to author year tags, as it is shown in the first figure?
  • How can I edit the space author year tag take in the page? Can I make this distance variable according to the tag?
  • How can I make that same authors articles are not grouped together and dashed? I would like to have each author year tag separately.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to read and answer this long issue.

  • Have a look at tex.stackexchange.com/q/420595/35864 – moewe Jun 28 at 7:22
  • 2
    ... and as I send that comment I realise you use Overeleaf :-(. Unfortunately, the LaTeX version on Overleaf is a bit outdated by now and does not come with biblatex-ext. Is there any chance you could use a more up-to-date local installation? (tex.stackexchange.com/q/348126/35864 pre-dates biblatex-ext and shows how things could work out on older systems, but it might not be exactly what you hoped for). – moewe Jun 28 at 7:23
  • Thank you @moewe! It is a pity Overleaf hasn't got the lastest version. For the moment I am not able to change to another up-to-date installation, but it is something I am going to bear in mind. The 2nd link you provided changes author-year style to introduce it more or less as I want, however I am new in the redefinition of styles and I am not able to introduce brackets [author year], should I ask a new question about that? – Aurea 1994 Jun 28 at 7:56
  • You could just edit this question here with the code you from the other answer and we can discuss what needs to be changed. – moewe Jun 28 at 10:25

This answer is specifically written for the situation in the question, where the OP uses the outdated LaTeX installation currently run on Overleaf.

Please refer to printbibliography output for "[author year] entrydata" (using biblatex-ext and its introcite option) if you are using a more recent TeX installation.

As mentioned in the comments and in printbibliography output for "[author year] entrydata", with an up-to-date LaTeX installation you could just use biblatex-ext's introcite=label.

With the outdated system that Overleaf currently runs, we have to code the stuff ourselves. Here I just copied the important bits from biblatex-ext. The customisation section that sets the square brackets and allows you to change to lengths (the width of the label and the minimum distance between label and entry; all of this uses the same names as in biblatex-ext, so you can have a look at the section documenting introcite in the biblatex-ext documentation, pp. 15-19, note that only introcite=label is implemented here).

\usepackage[style=authoryear, backend=biber, dashed=false]{biblatex}

% implementation copied from biblatex-ext




% This macro is used in \defbibenvironment


% customisation starts here


Bibliography with author-year labels in square brackets

The general solution works for other authoryear and authortitle styles as well, but some details would have to be changed for the more complex -icomp styles.

Note the option dashed=false, since the default dashed=true would look weird (at least that's what I think) and would leave excessive space after the namedash (that could probably be fixed).

Note also that citestyle=authoryear,style=authoryear,sorting=nyt, is equivalent to just


since style sets both bibstyle and citestyle and the authoryear style sets sorting=nyt already.

  • Thank you so much @moewe!! I fixed my bibliography after so many hours! You really helped me with the documentation and your comments! – Aurea 1994 Jun 30 at 15:40

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.