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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Research data management

Select license

Here you can find information for the choice of a license for your research data.

Every member of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin is free to decide whether and if so which license is appropriate for his/her research data. However, patents, rights of third parties or other reasons should not prohibit the respective license. For the licensing of research data, we recommend - in accordance with many German and international research funders and the Open Access Declaration of the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - the use of open licenses (for example CC0, CC BY, CC BY-SA; GNU General Public License, MIT License a.o.). The following licenses are recommendations for appropriate research data licenses. For more information please click on the respective license.

In brief: Licences (PDF for download)

Creative Commons (CC) Licenses 4.0

The assignment of a Creative Commons license has - with the exception of CC0 (waiver of copyright/public domain) - no influence on your copyright. However, it offers the possibility to assign user rights for your research data in a simple and standardized way. You have the choice between different license levels.

Please note that the use of Creative Commons licenses is not recommended for software. You can find separate recommendations for appropriate software licenses in the following section.

CC0 (Public Domain)

All rights worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights are waived, to the extent allowed by law. Research data can be copied, modified, redistributed and transformed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.

CC BY (Attribution)

This is the most accommodating license without waiving copyright. CC BY allows others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon, even commercially, your research data as long as you are named as the author of the original.

CC BY-ND (Attribution - No Derivatives)

This license allows others to copy and redistribute your research data, commercially as well as non-commercially, as long as this is done without changes and completely and you are named as author.

CC BY-NC (Attribution - Non Commercial)

This licence allows others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon your research data, as long as it is non-commercially. Although the new research data must also acknowledge you and be non-commercial, the authors don’t have to license the derivative research data on the same terms.

CC BY-SA (Attribution - Share Alike)

This license allows others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon your research data, even commercially, as long as you are named as author of the original and as long as the derivative research data is licensed under the same terms. This license is often compared to "copyleft" licenses in the field of free and open source software. All new research data, that builds upon your data, will be under the same license, that means the data can also be used commercially.

CC BY-NC-SA (Attribution - Non Commercial - Share Alike)

The license allows others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon your research data, but only non-commercially and as long as you are named as author of the original and the derivative research data that is based on your data is published under the same conditions.

CC BY-NC-ND (Attribution - Non Commercial - No Derivatives)

This is the most restrictive license. It only allows the download and redistribution of your research data as long as you are named as author, without modification or commercial use.

(in: Creative Commons "About The Licenses")

 

Licenses for software

In contrast to other research data, software needs a particular license. The use of Creative Commons licenses should be avoided. However, there are a range of appropriate licences one can choose from.

MIT License

This license allows others to use, copy, redistribute, even commercially, and transform your software without warranty or liability. Open-source software as well as closed-source software can be remixed with your software.

GNU General Public License (GPL)

This license allows others to copy, redistribute, transform and execute your software as long as the new source code based on your software is published under the same conditions. This license is prevalent, among other things due to the aforementioned condition.

GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL)

This license allows others to copy, redistribute, transform and execute your software as long as the new source code based on your software is published under the same conditions. It is also possible to use and remix this software with proprietary software.

Apache License

This license allows others to freely use, transform and redistribute your software, but changes have to be indicated and a copy of the license is always to be included in the new software. Furthermore, you must be named as the creator of the original software.

 

These and other licenses as well as additional information can be found at: