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Let´s say I wrote the following statement in my thesis:

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks, noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption."

After that, I am citing the name of the authors that I am referring to (each of them has published a different paper), let´s say Author A, Author B and Author C. However, while Author A and B include all benefits, Author C did only state in his paper, that cycling can reduce health risks.

Is it okay to use all authors at the end of the statement?

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks, noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption (Author A, Author B, Author C)."

or should I put the authors' names right after the corresponding words:

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks (Author C), noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption (Author A, Author B)."

  • Are you using the quote marks you show here in the thesis or are you writing it as a paraphrase without quote marks? – Buffy May 19 at 13:26
  • With Buffy's comment, consider using quote formatting for the proposed phrasings – Azor Ahai -- he him May 19 at 17:38
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Assuming these papers actually provide convincing evidence for the claims and aren't just "stating" things (i.e. they're good sources for the claims), I would prefer a third option:

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks (Author A, Author B, Author C), noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption (Author A, Author B)."

That way the citations are as specific and as close to the claims as possible. As for your two options, they have some implications for readers. Keep in mind that the "Golden Rule" of technical writing is to always consider the audience.

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks, noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption (Author A, Author B, Author C)."

This option has less specific citations, and is thus somewhat less helpful to your readers. For example, if a reader wants to find out more about the noise claim, which paper do they pick first? Maybe it is the one by Author C because it happens to be the only one not behind a paywall... That's some time wasted right there. Note that this option also maximizes the distance between the health risk claim and the citation to Author C, which is generally the opposite of what you should strive for.

"A substantial shift to cycling can reduce health risks (Author C), noise and air pollution and space and energy consumption (Author A, Author B)."

This option only uses Author C to support the health claim, and Authors A,B would likely be understood as providing support only for the following claims. Depending on the works in question, that may or may not be what you want to communicate.

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