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I need to use the NeurIPS template. However, with the following minimal working example:

\documentclass{article}


\usepackage[final]{neurips_2019}
\usepackage[backend=bibtex, style=ieee]{biblatex}

\title{}

\begin{document}
\maketitle
\end{document}

(the .sty file is in the same path as the .tex file) I get:

! Package biblatex Error: Incompatible package 'natbib'.

How can I get around this error?

  • 1
    Neurips seems to internally load natbib which can't be used in combination with biblatex. Therefore, drop biblatex and stick with the functionalities of natbib. – leandriis Nov 18 '19 at 6:31
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neurips_2019.sty loads the citation/bibliography package natbib. natbib is incompatible with biblatex since biblatex reimplements LaTeX's citation features completely. That's why you get the error

! Package biblatex Error: Incompatible package 'natbib'.

Since the package you need to use for submission loads natbib, the obvious way to resolve this issue is not to load biblatex. The accompanying file https://media.neurips.cc/Conferences/NeurIPS2019/Styles/neurips_2019.tex mentions that the exact citation style does not matter, so you could go with something like

\documentclass{article}

\usepackage[final]{neurips_2019}

\title{Lorem}
\author{A. Uthor}

\begin{document}
\cite{blub}
\bibliographystyle{plainnat}
\bibliography{mybibfile}
\end{document}

which is based on standard natbib styles.

|improve this answer|||||
  • % to avoid loading the natbib package, add option nonatbib: % \usepackage[nonatbib]{neurips_2019} I saw it just now. – Vorac Nov 19 '19 at 18:40
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    @Vorac Even if it is possible not to load natbib with the style file (and it thus becomes possible to load biblatex) I would recommend against using biblatex in a submission unless the publisher explicitly allows biblatex. Since biblatex uses a completely different implementation of citations and bibliography than, thebibliography, classical BibTeX and natbib, publishers may not be able to deal with biblatex as expected. See for example tex.stackexchange.com/q/12175/35864. ... – moewe Nov 19 '19 at 19:15
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    ... It is usually safer to stick with natbib, especially if there is no need for advanced biblatex features or customisability. – moewe Nov 19 '19 at 19:15

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