how do you have to handle referencing/ citations in the following scenario:

In the first paragraph of a section, a concept A is introduced with a citation. In the following paragraph, another concept B is introduced.

Then in the third paragraph, both concepts are mentioned again (for example, to combine both to a concept C). Do you have to add a reference after both concepts again?

(1) "Combining concept A (Author S, date, p. XXX) and concept B (Author P, date, p. XX), a concept C supports the argument ..."

(2) "Combining concept A and concept B, ..."

Which approach is correct? If none, how shall this be done?

1 Answer 1


The purpose of a citation is to acknowledge the contributions of others and to refer the reader to a source for further elucidation. Your possibility (2) does this as well as (1) and should be sufficient. You can italicize concepts A and B as a short-cut that you will be reusing them. If you are free to choose a less burdensome citation style (such as numeric references [3] or abbreviated references [TS22]), then possibility (1) becomes more attractive. As it is, it really lowers readability.

  • thank you. So if concept A and B have already been introduced a paragraph earlier in the same section, (2) does not require the same in-text reference (--> it is optional)? Commented Jun 8, 2022 at 12:59

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