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Harvard Referencing (AGSM)

Guide to the Harvard Referencing Style, as used by Australian Government bodies

What if ...

... there's no date?                                                                 ...I can't find an author?                                              ...two authors have the same name?


...I read about it in another source?                                    ...the article is 'in press'?                                                ... I have multiple works for one citation?


...I have a long reference list with many
citations by the same author?


No date

If there is no date use 'n.d.' (for 'no date') in both the in text citation and the reference list.


In text:

In the late 1950s, white Australians became more aware of indigenous living conditions reported in the news (National Museum Australia n.d.).

The civil rights movements started to gain momentum in Australia as "events in the late 1950s brought the sufferings of the few into the living rooms of the many" (National Museum Australia n.d.).


Reference list:

National Museum of Australia (n.d.). The fight for civil rights. NMA website, accessed 18 October 2021.


Regarding reference list order:

If you have several works by the same author, and one of the works has no date but the other works are dated, (n.d.) is treated as the oldest work for ordering your references

If you have multiple citations from the same author which also do not have a date, you will follow the same instructions as you would if there was a date.

Order the citations in your reference list alphabetically by title, and place an 'a', 'b', etc after the date.


Reference list:

National Museum of Australia (n.d.-a). Nelson the Newfoundland's dog collarNMA website, accessed 18 October 2021.

National Museum of Australia. (n.d.-b). Newcastle bakery cartNMA website, accessed 18 October 2021.

No author or anonymous

Is there a corporate body (like a government department or a company) who is responsible for the work? They are probably your author.  Take a look at Organisation as an author.

If you are citing a newspaper, blog or magazine article that does not list an author place the title of the newspaper, blog or magazine in the position of the author as well as the title of the publication.

Reference List

Facebook for Business (29 April 2021) ' How businesses are meeting the new needs of today's shoppers', Facebook for Business, accessed 20 October 2021.

Two authors have the same name?

Same author and date

In the reference list:

Order the references in the reference list alphabetically by title (excluding 'A' or 'The'). Assign the letters after the date according to their order in the reference list (not the order of appearance in text).

Longley L (2008a). 'Anaesthesia and analgesia in rabbits and rodents', In Practice, 30(2):92-97,

Longley L (2008b). 'Clinical refresher: Intubation of rabbits', Companion Animal, 13(5):68-70,

In text citation:

Longley (2008a) notes that many small animals are susceptible to...

"Positioning of the rabbit is paramount to the technique of intubation" (Longley 2008b:p:68).

…the use of a laryngoscope (Longley 2008a, 2008b).


Different authors with the same surname and the same first initial:

In the reference list:

If multiple first authors share the same surname and the same initials arrange it by the year of publication.

Multiple-author entries with the same first author and different subsequent authors should be arranged alphabetically by the surname of the second author.


Further information and example can be found under 'Setting out the Reference List'.

I read about it in another source

Academically, it is  better to find the original source and reference that.

If you do have to quote a secondary source:

  • In the text you must cite the original author of the quote as well as the source you read it in.
  • In the reference list you only list the source that you actually read.

In text citation:

Shakespeare claimed that "the mice disappeared within minutes" (as cited in Frogmouth 2013:10-12).

Shakespeare (as cited in Frogmouth 2013) noted that the mice didn't stay long.

Some have noted that the mice didn't stay long (Shakespeare, as cited in Frogmouth 2013).

The article is 'in press'

Manuscript Accepted for Publication

Once an article is accepted for publication, the status changes to 'in press' and you can include the name of the journal in the reference.


Author A (in press) ‘Title of article: subtitle of article’, Name of Journal.


Castle R (in press) 'Shadowing a police officer: how to be unobtrusive while solving cases in spectacular fashion', Professional Writers' Journal.

For EndNote users:

EndNote Reference Type Journal article
Field notes
  • Enter 'in press' in the Year field

I have multiple works for one citation

You need to cite all the sources you have used in a sentence.

If you wish to put two or more in-text citations in the same brackets, they go in the same order that they appear in the reference list (i.e. alphabetically and then, if the names are the same, by year).

Separate the in-text citations by different authors with a semicolon ; and a space. Two works by the same author are separated by a comma.

(Drongo 2014; Frogmouth et al. 2000).

(Drongo 2014; Frogmouth et al. 2000; Sunbird and Jay 2010, 2012).

If you have multiple works by the same author, use a comma to "stack" the years within the same citation:

(Longley 2008a, 2008b; Smith 2014, 2016).

I have a long reference list with many citations by the same author

If you have a very long reference list, such as for a report or thesis, you may have many resources written by the same author.

To avoid repetition you can use 2 unspaced em dashes for works by the same author cited immediately afterwards in the reference list.

AIHW (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare) (2020a) 'Australia’s health 2020 data insights', Australia’s Health Series 17, catalogue number AUS 231, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 18 February 2022.

— (2020b) 'Australia’s health 2020: in brief', Australia’s Health Series 17, catalogue number AUS 232, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 18 February 2022.

— (2021) 'Australia’s welfare 2021 data insights', Australia’s Welfare Series 5. Cat. no. AUS 236, AIHW, Australian Government, accessed 18 February 2022.

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