Without a professional index the doors into your book will stay closed.


Back-of-the-book indexes:

Embedded indexes

e-Book indexes


Beginning indexers

Authors who want to index their own publications


Workshops for authors and technical writers

Workshops for editors and publishers


Compiling bibliographies

(Re-)writing bibliographic references in notes

I have been a full-time freelance indexer for over 12 years, working mainly in the fields of humanities, arts, law and engineering. I have over 450 commissions under my belt, and my clients include academics, authors, publishers, publishing services, institutions and businesses, including:


Asser Press

Brill Academic Publishers

Cambridge Scholars Publishing

Cambridge University Press

Claeys & Casteels

De Gruyter


I.B. Tauris

ICE Publishing

Joods Historisch Museum (Amsterdam)

Littman Library of Jewish Civilization

Mohr Siebeck Verlag

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press

NAP Process Industry Network

New York University Press

Oxford University Press

Palgrave MacMillan

Peeters Publishers

The Sphere Project

University of Massachusetts Press

Yad Vashem

Van Eck Verlag

Walburg Pers


Sita van Bemmelen, author of: Christianity, Colonization, and Gender Relations in North Sumatra: A Patrilineal Society in Flux, 2018.

I have been impressed by the thorough work Pierke Bosschieter has done on the index of my book ‘Christianity, Colonization and Gender Relations in North Sumatra, published by J. Brill, Leiden, in 2017. In particular her indexing of themes and sub-themes was a pleasant surprise: it is important as search engine for readers, but it is not easy for someone else apart from the author to make a good selection. Well done, Pierke!

Femke Stock, author of: Home and Migrant Identity in Dialogical Life Stories of Moroccan and Turkish Dutch, 2018.

The index to my book, I must confess, fell in the category of ‘tiresome obligations standing in the way of getting the thing published’. Little did I know how Pierkes work would add a completely new layer to mine, mapping out the subject matter and making it accessible in a way I would have deemed impossible, considering the complexity and narrative texture of my book. Pierke, thank you for letting me see my own work through a reader’s eyes. Thanks also for the smooth process, your flexibility and communicativeness. Highly recommended!

Mingyuan Hu, author of: Fou Lei: An Instistence on Truth, 2017.

In Pierke one finds a top-notch indexer of astounding professionalism. A reader of refined culture, she understood, with empathy and with precision, my monograph on Fou Lei, which she indexed to perfection. To her I shall turn for any future projects, and cannot recommend her highly enough.

Anja-Silvia Goeing, author of: Storing, Archiving, Organizing, 2017.

Pierke conceptualized and drafted the index for my book “Storing…” that came out in December 2016 with Brill. I was amazed about her level of detail work. She understood the topics I treat in my book, and the index is wonderfully crafted. Also, she was on time! 5 star work.

Lena Jayyusi, author of: Media and Political Contestation in the Contemporary Arab World, 2016.

Pierke did the index for my book, Media and Political Contestation in the Contemporary Arab World (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2016). She was professional, meticulous and very responsive to the needs of an index that included a lot of transliterated words and names using a specific set of conventions. I was very pleased with the results, and would certainly ask her to prepare an index for me again.

Walter Homolka, author of: Jewish Jesus Research and its Challenge to Christology Today, 2016.

Pierke has now done the second project for us, both in the humanities, and we are very content with her precision and her punctuality. One book was for DeGruyter Berlin/Boston, the other for Brill Leiden. We looked for the best and will always contact her again for a future project.

Julie-Marthe Cohen, editor of: Neglected Witnesses: The Fate of Jewish Ceremonial Objects During the Second World War and After, 2011.

In this very dense and complicated book the index is an essential part that contributes very much to the scholarly quality of the book. Pierke’s has very well succeeded in making this index. She is a very flexible and dedicated person, it was very nice working with her.

Robin Lane Fox, editor of: Brill’s Companion to Ancient Macedon, 2011.

Pierke did such a quick and efficient index for the very complex, scholarly volume Brill’s Companion To Ancient Macedon; I could never have done it myself.

Ton Derksen, author of: De ware toedracht, 2o10.

Je hebt prachtige indexen voor De ware toedracht gemaakt. Veel handiger en inzichtelijker dan ik zelf als schrijver voor mogelijk had gehouden. Index-maken is kennelijk inmiddels een echt vak geworden waar de professional de auteur aangenaam kan verrassen. Voor de auteur is er één gevaar: straks lezen mensen liever de index dan het boek.

Lidwien Kapteijns and Annemiek Richters, editors of Mediation of Violence in Africa, 2010.

It was a challenge to make an index for Mediations of Violence in Africa, with its six different authors, and its wide range of sources in many languages. However, the editors were pleased with the index. They appreciate both its quality (and thus Pierke Bosschieter’s insights and problem-solving), and the timeliness of its completion (and thus Pierke’s reliability and punctuality). 

Frank van Eck, publisher of, Der Staat im dritten Jahrtausend, by Fürst Hans-Adam II. Von Liechtenstein, 2010.

Wir danken ISB&Index für die ausgezeichnete und problemlose Zusammenarbeit. Die Leser von «Der Staat in dritten Jahrtausend» von Fürst Hans-Adam II. von Liechtenstein werden vom exzellenten Index zusammengestellt von Pierke Bosschieter profitieren können.

Ian Cressie, assistent editor of: Tomorrow’s Answers Today, 2008.

Your expertise, as well as your flexibilty and perseverence, was greatly appreciated by me, and indirectly, by the rest of the team.

Ralph Melnick, author of: Senda Berenson: The Unlikely Founder of Women’s Basketball, 2007.

The index arrived. IT LOOKS GREAT! Thanks so very much for all of your wonderful work. It will be a wonderful part of the book.

Dr. Ahmed El-Ashker, author of: Islamic Economics: a Short History, 2006.

Thank you very much for doing a great job, it has been a pleasure working with you.


The average fee for academic books ranges between €3.50 and €4.00 per indexable page. These are usually all the pages in the book minus the table of contents and bibliography. The fee depends on the complexity of the text, the level of detail required, the number of indexes required and, sometimes, when tight deadlines are involved, the need to work unsocial hours.

Fees include up to two hours of modifications to the index after delivery. If more time is needed to fine-tune the index, an hourly fee of € 37.50 applies. After the index is completed, it is vital to avoid making subsequent changes to page numbering due to copy editing, or by moving illustrations and tables. This can lead to a considerable amount of extra work and consequently significant additional costs.


After you have given your approval to my quote, but before I start working on your index, it is advisable to agree on the following:

  • Delivery date of the proofs

  • Delivery date of the index

  • House-style instructions, if applicable

  • Maximum number of pages available for the index, if applicable

  • The treatment of passing mentions (see below)

When the delivery date of the proofs slips considerably, there is a small chance I will need to renegotiate my fee or perhaps even decline the assignment altogether, due to planning conflicts with jobs scheduled for other clients. In that case I will try to help you find another indexer available to do the work.

Passing Mentions

Indexes are compiled according to ISO 999:1996 International Standard on Information and Documentation (last reviewed and confirmed in 2015). This has the following to say about how the indexer has to treat uninformative references (‘passing mentions’):

4 b) discriminate between information on a subject and passing mention of a subject

4 c) exclude passing mention of subjects that offer nothing significant to the potential reader

‘Passing mentions’ are thus not indexed normally. The judgement is, of course subjective. But keep this rule in mind when you discover that not every mention of a modern author, for instance, is stated in the index. This is where an index differs from a global search. It leads the user to only the really important information in the text.

The Indexer, Volume 36 number 1, December 2018

Index-Manager Revisted (PDF)

The Indexer, Volume 35 number 3, September 2017


The Indexer, Volume 34 number 4, December 2016

Continuing professional development (CPD) and online learning (continued) (PDF)

Index-Manager Reviewed (PDF)

The Indexer, Volume 34 number 3, September 2016

Continuing professional development (CPD) and online learning (PDF)

The Indexer, Volume 34 number 2, June 2016

Continuing professional development (CPD) and the potential of new media (PDF)

Review of Cataloging the World by Alex Wright

The Indexer, Volume 28 number 3, September 2010.

The Kindle™ and the Indexer (PDF)

The Indexer, Volume 27 Number 1, March 2009

Book review: Shanachie tour: a library road trip across America

Basisboek Technische Communicatie, Koninklijke Van Gorcum, 2008

Hoofdstuk 14, Indexeren (PDF)

Information Wissenschaft & Praxis, 8/2007 

Translate the Index or Index the Translation (PDF)

Tekstblad, 04/2007

Registers: een kwestie van scherp waarnemen (PDF)

Tekstblad, 01/2008

Registers: het praktische gedeelte (PDF)

The Indexer, Volume 25 Number 3, April 2007

Book review: Website Indexes by James A. Lamb

The Indexer, Volume 25 Number 2, October 2006

Back-of-the-Book indexing in the Netherlands Today (PDF)

I make use of the following index-specific software:

SKY Index







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