11 February 2016

In Netherlands, discreetly …

Discreetly…. if we had not recovered the photos! Thomas Boraud and Erwan Bezard were part of the  Borbala DURAY’s thesis jury at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (Free University of Amsterdam). Thomas as rapporteur, while Erwan shared the thesis supervision with Pieter Voorn.

Do you know that in the Netherlands, the duration of the thesis defense does not exceed one hour? This is essentially a ceremonial step because the thesis has already been accepted prior to printing the document and before the organization of the ceremony. However, the honors are decided at that time.

Before the ceremony, the candidate called two assistants (paranimfen) that sit in front of him and can assist him during the defense. The jury members are dressed in a toga with a tie, and wearing a faluche (this holding is limited to professors and similar).

The ceremony was opened by the pedel (apparitor) who enters in the room, followed by the jury. He hits the ground with the scepter of the university then he leaves the room. The defense is chaired by the rector of the university that is responsible for giving voice to the different members of the jury and the candidate.

After exactly 45 minutes or an hour, the pedel enters again in the room, hits the ground and declares hora is. The ceremony is interrupted immediately (even in the middle of a question or response) and the jury leaves the room.

The jury returned shortly after to confer the title of doctor and award any mention. The doctor’s degree, written in Latin, is awarded on the field.