How to apply Spring Data projections in a Spring MVC controllers?

No it’s not, especially as projections are usually applied to the result of a query execution on a case by case basis. Thus they’re currently designed to be selectively applied to domain types.

As of the latest Spring Data Fowler release train GA release the projection infrastructure can be used programmatically in Spring MVC controllers. Simply declare a Spring bean for SpelAwareProxyProjectionFactory:

class SomeConfig {

  public SpelAwareProxyProjectionFactory projectionFactory() {
    return new SpelAwareProxyProjectionFactory();

Then inject it into your controller and use it:

class SampleController {

  private final ProjectionFactory projectionFactory;

  public SampleController(ProjectionFactory projectionFactory) {
    this.projectionFactory = projectionFactory;

  @PreAuthorize(value = "hasRole('ROLE_ADMIN')")
  @RequestMapping(value = "/users/employee")
  public Page<?> listEmployees(Pageable pageable) {

    return usersRepository.findEmployeeUsers(pageable).//
      map(user -> projectionFactory.createProjection(Projection.class, user);

See how as of the latest release Page has a map(…) method that can be used to transform the page content on the fly. We use a JDK 8 lambda to provide a conversion step using the ProjectionFactory.

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