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Thesis by publication (cumulative dissertation)

General terms

Doctoral Regulations of TU Berlin § 2 (3):

"The dissertation as a scientific treatise can consist of separate pieces of work published or submitted for publication (kumulative Dissertation or dissertation by publication). Such work must follow an internal logic which has to be coherently demonstrated by a joint introduction and concluding discussion. Further details regarding the type and number of contributions are determined by the faculties."

Implementation rules by the faculties:

Ways to publish

Whether you compile a monographic dissertation or thesis by publication, the same options for publication are available:

Publishing dissertations

Additionally, you have to respect the copyright terms of the publishers that first published your articles. You are usually asked to transfer exclusive rights to the publisher. In order to re-use these contributions in your thesis you will have to get the publisher’s permission.

Most publishers have fixed policies regarding self-archiving and re-use, in some cases publishers have more permissive terms for re-use in theses. Please note that the terms of your publishing contract (Copyright Transfer Agreement or CTA) are legally binding. If your CTA does not provide sufficient information, please check your publisher’s policy in this table:

Publishers theses policies

An embargo period might apply for the online publication of your thesis. Compliance with the embargo period is ensured by the repository DepositOnce. Author name, title and other descriptive data will be publicly available while full-text access is restricted during the embargo period.

Should you publisher prohibit re-use and should you wish to publish your thesis online anyway you may – as an exception – omit the full text. The online version should instead include a full citation (including DOI) of the originally published article.

Open content license

While the University Library generally welcomes the use of open access-compliant licenses (e.g. Creative Commons Attribution, CC BY) it is not recommended to assign an open content license to a thesis by publication. In some cases assigning an open content license might be permitted (e.g. for articles in open access journals). Please contact the University Library’s Open Access team for more information.


In case you have written the article jointly with others, please get your co-authors' consent to republish the material.

Publisher policies

As a general rule: You have to acknowledge the original publication by providing a full citation and (if applicable) linking to the published version (using the DOI). Please look up special conditions for re-use in this table:

Publishers theses policies

Your publisher is not listed? You are unsure whether you comply with all requirements? Please contact the library’s Open Access team.

Zusatzinformationen / Extras


Dissertation office:
Barbara Kühn
Tel.: (030) 314-76129
Jutta Kruse
Tel.: (030) 314 - 76128
Fax: (030) 314 - 76133


Open Access Team:
Tel.: (030) 314-7613