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What is the best way to cite QGIS in a formal publication? I mean, what text should be included in the References / Literature Cited section of a paper or report. I'm also specifically referring to the software itself, rather than the user's manual. I've looked in the user's manual and in Help->About, but I can't find an answer.

Thanks in advance for the help.

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up vote 16 down vote accepted

Start here:

Q: I want to cite Quantum GIS in my thesis. What is the correct citation reference of the Quantum GIS project

A: To cite QGIS software in your piece of work, for work or an assignment, this general citation might be helpful: "Quantum GIS Development Team (YEAR). Quantum GIS Geographic Information System. Open Source Geospatial Foundation Project.". For more choices, please refer to the wiki citation page


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Thanks for the quick answer. Forgot to look there. Maybe this info should be in the next version of the user's manual, if there are any of the great and good of QGIS reading this? – blackthorn Apr 17 '12 at 13:47
I was surprised it wasn't in the tips that popup when QGIS loads. I knew I saw it somewhere before and tabbed through all the tips before I checked the FAQ. – elrobis Apr 17 '12 at 21:33



    title = {QGIS Geographic Information System},
    author = {{QGIS Development Team}},
    organization = {Open Source Geospatial Foundation},
    year = {2009},
    url = {},

which gives

QGIS Development Team, 2009. QGIS Geographic Information System. Open Source Geospatial Foundation. URL

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