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This question pertains to peer reviewed journal articles in materials science/metallurgy.

In my upcoming research article, I wish to use some statistics from an industrial report to highlight the relevance of the material being studied. Said report is not academic or peer-reviewed, as it is based on business numbers and forecasts, aggregated by a forum. It does not have an author/list of authors (only a foreword by the secretary-general of the forum).

How can I cite this article? Is there a strong reason not to use this and stick to only academic publications?

Thank you!

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It is common in Economics to cite reports from institutions/lobby groups/banks, e.g. to motivate one's research. These reports may be more or less academic in nature and they are typically not peer-reviewed (they likely underwent some type of internal review process, but I would not compare that to peer review).

I typically cite them as (pseudo bibtex syntax below):

author = {[name of institution]}  
title = {title}  
journal = {[type of report]}  

If possible it is also nice to add a link or available at if the report is not easily found. You will likely be able to find a similar solution.

As an example, this article is published in Journal of Finance, a top journal in its field, and includes at least 4 such citations:

enter image description here

Source: preprint version of the article linked above. The blue text are clickable links in the original document.

  • Thank you! This is very relevant. In your opinion, are these controversial because of potential bias? – user153812 Mar 31 '18 at 10:05
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    @user153812 how controversial these are depends mostly on how you cite them. When citing, you should have an understanding of how the report arrived at its results and how realistic these are. Also keep in mind who you are citing and what their interests are. I would treat a Bank of England report differently than a study by McKinsey. Language helps, e.g. you would write industry reports [citation] suggest that potential savings are in the ballpark range of ... instead of reports prove without doubt that savings are 3.14 USD cent per piece. I.e. address potential controversy preemptively. – mts Mar 31 '18 at 11:06

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