Inconsistent presentation of author names

edited March 9, 2021

Related to this post:

Depending on the style of the journal, an author with the full name Random Academic Scholar might have published as:
Random A. Scholar
Random Scholar
R.A. Scholar
R. A. Scholar
R. Scholar

If one standardizes author names in their database, such that all references for Random Academic Scholar are entered in full, then is it possible to follow the requirement to list references exactly as they appear on the publication, as detailed here for APA? I suppose not?

Relatedly, if not the full name, then the preferred format a database entry is:
Scholar, R A
Scholar, RA
with periods:
or without?

Thanks very much.
  • Yeah, APA's somewhat odd rule there can't be handled by CSL.
    We'd generally recommend going with either the full names or full first name plus middle initial throughout. (For APA, those two are equivalent, of course).

    And yes, we'd recommend a space between initials if you don't have a first name.
  • !!! You were quicker than my edit. With periods or without? Thanks.
  • With periods. Since 2010, CSL has been updated to allow how any initials are renedered, so Random A and Random A. should behave identially, as should R. A. and R A but I think the latter seems odd, especially if you're thinkging about data exchange with other tools.
  • Great, thank you. Do you have any suggestions as to how to locate the full names of authors with whom you are not familiar? I was just looking at ...
  • I’d suggest just searching in Google Scholar for the author and seeing how their name appears on their other publications.
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