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Submitting your PhD dissertation

Practical information on submitting your dissertation

The Beadle’s office

You must submit copies of your thesis and appended propositions to the beadle’s office for the attention of the Doctorate Board no later than three weeks before the date of your doctoral defence.

Delivery during office hours or send: Bureau Pedel, Rapenburg 73, 2311 GJ Leiden.

PhD Regulations

By decision of the Doctorate Board every PhD candidate at Leiden University is obliged to deliver two copies of his/her dissertation to the library. He/she also submits the dissertation in digital form to the library for the benefit of the Institutional Repository (IR) of the University.

For relevant changes see PhD Regulations Leiden University.


Candidates are required to fill in both forms below.

  • Dissertation Description & Upload
    Fill out the form with a short summary and metadata of your dissertation. Also, use this form to upload PDFs of the dissertation, dissertation cover and propositions. If the dissertation contains published articles please fill in the DOIs.

    In the form you are asked for keywords. If there exists a generally accepted keyword list within your subject it's best to choose keywords from that list. If there's no such list, consult your promotor or mentor. Avoid words that are used in your dissertation's title, and words which have multiple explanations.
  • Appendix B (Licence Agreement, to be filled out and signed digitally and/or printed out and signed).
    By signing the licence you grant Leiden University the non-exclusive right to post your dissertation in the digital archive, making it available Open Access worldwide. The university will clearly indicate the author or owner of the publication, and will not make any changes other than allowed by this licence. On this appendix you can also indicate which parts of your thesis should be put under embargo.

Send one completed and signed copy of Appendix B, together with two copies of your dissertation, to the following address: 

University Libraries Leiden - MDA 
Van Steenis Building 
Einsteinweg 2
2333 CC Leiden 

Compensation for printing costs

PhD candidates receive a financial compensation of €500,-  for the printing costs of the dissertation. This compensation is paid by the UBL after receiving two printed copies of the dissertation, a digital copy of the dissertation and the signed license for the non-exclusive publication of the dissertation in digital form.

File types

File types should be PDF. In most cases candidates will already have a PDF-file that is used for printing purposes. Word files can be turned into PDF by choosing File -> Save as Adobe PDF. 

Please submit your dissertation as one single PDF. In case one or more chapters are embargoed please indicate so on Appendix B. Further editing is done by our metadata specialists. Also submit the DOI's from chapters that have already been published as articles. The cover and propositions can be submitted separately. 

When you would like to store your research data please contact the data management experts at the Centre for Digital Scholarship.

When you only have files in Word (or other file formats), or have questions on the procedure please contact us by e-mail or call us at (071) 527 1525.


It is possible to request an embargo of 6, 12, 18, or 24 months for parts of the thesis in those cases where this is necessary because of arrangements with a publisher or for future publications. This embargo period can be stated in the licence. Doctoral candidates are required to check for themselves if and for how long the embargoes need to be set. In case the embargo period is insufficient, this can be extended within reason by the library as stated in the Ph.D. regulations. Please contact the library in case you need an extension.

Although a thesis might be placed under embargo, a candidate is still obliged to submit his/her disseration. Dissertations under embargo are archived for the long term, but not made available full text. However, the abstract and bibliographical information will be made available.

Publishing at your own website or a publisher

Candidates can publish the pdf of their dissertation on their own website. It is easier though, to put the repository-url of your dissertation on your website instead of the pdf. This url is permanent and will therefore remain unaltered.

If you have already published (articles from) your dissertation through a publisher, or are planning to do so, and also want your dissertation published in Open Access, approval depends on the type of licence you and your publisher have signed. In most cases you will have kept the right to submit your article / dissertation in an institutional repository or most publishers will grant you this right. In these cases you will have no problem submitting your dissertation. Note that some publishers can object to submitting a publisher's pdf. A new pdf will then have to be made. If your licence does not mention submitting your publication to an institutional repository, you may be able to find information about their Open Access policy on the publisher's website. Finally, you can write to the publisher to request permission to submit your publication to the repository. Most publishers are obliging in these cases. An up to date overview of publishers and their policies regarding copyright and online archiving in institutional repositories can be found on Sherpa Romeo Publisher copyright policies & self-archiving.


If you have any questions on the procedure please contact us by e-mail, or call us at (071) 527 1525.

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