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Princeton University
Office of the Dean of the Faculty


October 2011; Last revised April 2016

Dear Colleague,

Last fall the Dean of the Faculty appointed an ad hoc faculty committee, comprised of faculty from all four divisions of the University, to study the question of open access to faculty publications.  Based on the work of this committee, you and your colleagues approved an “open access” policy at the first Faculty meeting of the new academic year.  The policy is intended to make the faculty’s scholarly articles, published in journals and conference proceedings, available to a wider audience. We want to thank the committee, particularly its chair, Andrew Appel, for its work on this important issue, and we encourage you to read the committee’s report at

Under the open access policy, the faculty grant to the Trustees of Princeton University a “nonexclusive, irrevocable, worldwide license to exercise any and all copyrights in his or her scholarly articles published in any medium, whether now known or later invented, provided the articles are not sold by the University for a profit, and to authorize others to do the same. This grant applies to all scholarly articles that any person authors or co-authors while appointed as a member of the Faculty, except for any articles authored or co-authored before the adoption of this policy or subject to a conflicting agreement formed before the adoption of the policy.” The policy contains a provision under which the Provost may waive or suspend application of this license for a particular article authored or co-authored by a faculty member. You may request a copyright waiver by completing the electronic form located at Upon submission of this form, an email message containing the waiver will be promptly generated and sent to your email address.

To better serve the aim of open access, the University is exploring the possibility of building a repository for faculty scholarship, where you may post your work and the public may easily access it. As plans for the repository progress, we wll keep you informed.

If you have any questions or concerns about the new policy, please contact the Dean of the Faculty’s office at In addition, you may find it useful to consult the “Frequently Asked Questions” appended to the committee’s report.

Yours sincerely,

Christopher L. Eisgruber David P. Dobkin
Provost Dean of the Faculty
3 Nassau Hall 9 Nassau Hall