Can I provide two plots made using two different softwares in a scientific paper? For example, one is plotted using Origin and another is plotted using Python?

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    Why do you think that you could not do that? Commented Feb 2, 2023 at 14:09

4 Answers 4


It is not unusual to have plots created with different software if they are used to display different kind of data. But I would not plot the same kind of data in the same paper once with one software and once with another (unless there is a very convincing reason to do so, in case the reason should also be provided).


Using different applications for different plots is not uncommon, especially when there are collaborations among different groups which are accustomed to different applications.

For instance, I have a number of papers published with various groups across the world. I'm used to plotting graphs by using the workflow Matlab->matlab2tikz, whereas other coauthors of mine are more confident with Origin. For diagrams, I usually work with Inkscape, but other groups may have other preferences.

Most of the time, we didn't have any issue, but there have been rare occasions in which a reviewer (you know, that reviewer #2, the nitpicking one) asked us to make the diagrams more uniform across a paper. This request was typically not referred to plots but to circuit diagrams, and it was more related to the symbols used rather than the software used, but indeed it's easier to guarantee uniformity when the same software is used (in cases like this one, when I'm the first author, I usually volunteer to redraw everything in a uniform way with the same software).


Q: Can I provide two plots made using two different softwares in a scientific paper?

A: Unless a publisher (and their review process) tells you otherwise, you can do whatever you want for figures. Ideally, the plots in your paper will be consistent formatting with each other (e.g., same tick styles, label fonts).

Personally, I have seen papers where plots come from different programs, and I could tell because the figures mismatched each other with style. As long as the formatting of the plots does not distract from the science you are presenting, I would not be worried about the format.

Thus, I think consistent and readable formatting is more important that the program used for your plots. I would encourage you to focus on your plotting skills rather than the program used to create your plots.


It will depend on how the journal operates. Many journals will be able to accept images you create. Others will want the data for a graph to typeset it themselves. Others will accept images sometimes for some types of figures, and want to plot the data themselves for others. For images, there will be image file formats they can accept, and others they cannot. They will also have opinions on what format and resolution looks best.

Also, these things may change over time. A journal that acquires new publishing software may find that new sets of restrictions exist.

Contact the journal to find out what they can deal with, and what restrictions there are. They probably have a standard response for such questions, because they probably get it frequently.

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