Open Data

Open Data can be summed up in the statement that:

_“Open means anyone can freely access, use, modify, and share for any purpose (subject, at most, to requirements that preserve provenance and openness).”_

Put most succinctly:

_“Open data and content can be freely used, modified, and shared by anyone for any purpose”_

Read the full Open Definition here.

Copyright and licences

Copyright is a form of intellectual property. It will affect you when you publish or share your own work, or when you cite or re-use the work of others, including modified or derivative versions. In brief:

  •  Copyright applies to all "intellectual creations with an individual character" (Swiss CopA)
  • All works are protected as soon as they are created
  • There are exceptions to copyright, e.g. quotations or private use
  • While there is no globally binding law, mutual recognition of minimum standards exist between countries

Read more from the source Lib4RI: Copyright and CC licenses.

Copyright grants the author of a work the recognition of their authorship as well as the exclusive right to decide on whether, when and where their work shall be published.

Question: How can the work be shared and reused while still ensuring that authors are recognised in terms of copyright?

Answer: Through applying the right licenses.

How do Open Data licenses help?

Licensing is important because it reduces uncertainty. Without a license you don’t know how to answer the following questions:

  • When are you allowed to use this data?
  • Are you allowed to give the data to others?
  • Can you distribute your own changes to the data?

Licenses deliver clarity and simplicity and help to ensure interoperability. People can know at a glance, and without having to go through a whole lot of legal paragraphs, what they are allowed to do.

Check our Empa internal documentation about how to handle licensing of Empa software and the use of Creative Commons (CC) Licences here.