BibTeX supports storing constant strings using @String {key = value}. JabRef supports managing them using BibTeX → Edit strings, which opens the String Editor. These values can be used in fields. For example, you can have:

@String { kopp = "Kopp, Oliver" }
@String { kubovy = "Kubovy, Jan" }
@String { et = " and " }

and then in some entry for example: @Misc{ author = kopp # et # kubovy } or @Misc{ author = kopp # " and " # kubovy }. In the JabRef field editor, the author has to be inserted as #kopp# #et# #kubovy# or #kopp# and #kubovy#.

JabRef enhances the concept of Strings to add a type to those @Strings. The issue is how to preserve such type of a string in a BibTeX file. JabRef adds the type though prefixes:

  • @String { aKopp = "Kopp, Oliver" } is a @String with the type author.
  • @String { iMIT = "{Massachusetts Institute of Technology ({MIT})}" } is a @String with the type of institution.
  • @String { anct = "Anecdote" } is a @String of type other.
  • @String { lTOSCA = "Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications" } is a @String of type other.

Then @Strings of type author should be used for author and editors fields only. @Strings of type institution should be used for institution and organization fields only. @Strings of type publisher should be used only for publisher fields. And finally @Strings of type other can be used anywhere.

It can also happen that you will have the same institution for more types:

  • @String { aMIT = "{Massachusetts Institute of Technology ({MIT})}" } if the institution will appear as author or editor
  • @String { iMIT = "{Massachusetts Institute of Technology ({MIT})}" } if the institution will appear as institution or organization
  • @String { pMIT = "{Massachusetts Institute of Technology ({MIT}) press}" } if the institution will appear as publisher.

Even if the last example may appear contradicting the intention was to remove duplicity and unify the names of persons and institutions.