I am curious about a way to build nicely designed conference proceedings based on separate contributions available in the pdf format and all based on a given LateX template. The difficulty seems to be twofold:

  • page numbering over the whole proceedings booklet
  • a proper table of contents

It looks to me that the pdfpages package would be a good start. Maybe, there is somewhere an existing approach that I am missing.

  • 2
    The pdfpages package can do all that. It has (experimental) features for a table of contents, and page numbering can be obtained using the plain pagestyle. All you have to do then is to ensure that the "given Latex template" disables page numbering. – T. Verron Jul 21 '13 at 22:00
  • 1
    If you have the LaTeX source for the contributions, consider the combine package - see tex.stackexchange.com/questions/119415/… – Ethan Bolker Jul 22 '13 at 0:14
  • 1
    The »confproc« package could come in handy here. – Thorsten Donig Jul 22 '13 at 7:09
  • @T.Verron could you please turn your comment into an answer? – pluton Jul 22 '13 at 13:35
  • @EthanBolker could you please turn your comment into an answer? – pluton Jul 22 '13 at 13:35

A solution using pdfpages

This package lets you include pdf files in full size, unlike \includegraphics. It also supports a few experimental features, including custom page style and table of contents.

Custom page style can give you the page numbering you want, if you set it to be the plain style instead of the default empty.


You just need to make sure the submissions won't come with their own page numbering, as it would give a confusing result. Even in that case, there would be solutions, but they are more complicated and "hacky".

About the table of contents, the current version of the package supports an experimental option for that purpose. Have a look at the doc (here, bottom of page 6) for the full syntax, but a MWE for your usecase could be:

\includepdf[addtotoc={\thepage, section, 1, Title of the first submission, lbl:sub1}]{submission1.pdf}
  • The scripts made available in confproc are a wrapper around pdfpages and provide more sophisticated control. – koppor Jan 4 '17 at 15:49
  • \thepage is not working for me (I get no toc at all), but if I use 1 it works fine: \includepdf[addtotoc={1,chapter,1,Title of the first submission,lbl:sub1}]{submission1.pdf}. – mmj Jul 5 '18 at 16:17

The question has been already solved in the comments so this answer should not be accepted, although probably it is worth extend the possible solutions.

You should take a look at packages on CTAN for type­set­ting con­fer­ence pro­ceed­ings. Some are outdated and most are oriented to specific styles of contributions (IEEE, ACM, ICSV, AMS, Cascadilla Proceedings Project stylesheet, etc.) rather that build conference books, but there are also a ab­st­book to make book of abstract and the cited confproc package for gen­er­at­ing con­fer­ence pro­ceed­ings. If the LateX source of contributors are complete documents ofthe same class, you can use also standalone, docmute packages, in addition to the cited combine class.

You can also download the Sven Siegmund's proceedings class for XeTeX.


Note: Publishers should offer templates for that. For instance, Springer offers help for proceedings authors at https://www.springer.com/gp/computer-science/lncs/editor-guidelines-for-springer-proceedings. It uses makeindex for index generation.

Aims of my solution

I had to generate proceedings for LNI and had following aims:

  • Automatic generation of
    • running heads (including page numbers, authors, title of the paper)
    • table of contents
    • PDF bookmarks
    • index
    • proceedings.bib listing all papers including page numbers
  • Working hyperlinks
    • from the TOC to the papers
    • within the papers
    • from the index to the papers

The solution

I came up with my own solution heavily relying on

The solution is more than 400 lines of LaTeX, which come with other scripts. The complete result is available at https://gi-ev.github.io/LNI-proceedings/.

Considered alternatives

When designing this solution to typeset complete proceedings, several alternatives were investigated. Nearly all possible alternatives are listed at http://www.ctan.org/topic/confproc. In the following, evaluated alternatives are listed and discussed.


confproc seems to the most suitable alternative. Compared with this approach, it has following drawbacks:

  • The PDFs of the papers do not take a proper heading (page numbers, editor).
  • When clicking on a link in one included PDF, the linked PDF is opened instead of jumping to the link.
  • Indexing of authors has to be done by manually.


The combine class combines the sources of different LaTeX together. Since there might be conflicting packages, we wanted to include each PDF on its own. It seems to be more easy to typeset each paper for itself (LaTeX, Word) and then to combine the resulting PDFs.

Complete example using combine is posted at https://tex.stackexchange.com/a/28727/9075.


proc is a very basic class based on the article class. No update since 1995.


If you have the LaTeX source for the contributions, consider the combine package - see Trying to create simple template for novice users

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