OPening up Research

Gwen Franck


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Recap: what is open access?

"free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without financial, legal, or technical barriers other than those inseparable from gaining access to the internet itself. The only constraint on reproduction and distribution, and the only role for copyright in this domain, should be to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited"

Recap: what is open access?

  • very broad definition!
  • more limited forms of OA are in use 
    • no reuse rights
    • free registration required
    • embargo's
  • self-archiving: copyright holder
    • archives publication...
    • ... or permits 3rd party archiving
  • OA journals/ Journals with OA option
    • article is online at moment of publication
  • 'Is It Open Access?' vs. 'How Open Is It?'

    No copyright infringement!

    • OA is provided by the copyright holder
      • author
      • publisher
      • institution
      • ...

    How Open Is It?

    • Free access
      • everyone with internet access
      • does not necessarily allow other rights
    • Open Access
      • right to re-use, redistribute, remix ...
      • accepted limitations
        • attribution
        • integrity
        • share under the same terms

    What is Creative Commons?

    Creative Commons enables the sharing and use of  knowledge through free legal tools -

    without losing attribution


    = simplification of existing copyright rules

    How does it work?

    • Copyright holder applies CC License to the work
    • Legally binding
    • CC is not a rightsholder org- offers no legal advice/support
    • 6 different licenses to choose from


    CC and Science

    "... CC BY is a good choice of license for scientific reports and, under certain conditions, even data. In most cases, opting out of copyright altogether by releasing data under a CC0 public domain dedication is an even better choice. It may seem surprising to some, but you lose nothing by relinquishing all rights, and actually gain a lot both for yourself and for science in general. This is truly a case of “give and ye shall receive.”"

    Puneet Kishor, Project Coordinator for Science and Data at Creative Commons

    which license to use

    • most major OA publishers (and non-OA), offer CC options
    • CC0, CC-BY and CC-BY-SA
      • requirement in a lot of mandates (e.g. Wellcome Trust)
      • allows for re-use, text and data mining, ...
    • in reality, a lot of researchers prefer more limiting licenses such as the CC-BY-NC and CC-BY-ND 
      • limitations
        • ND: prohibits article translations, image libraries, TDM and data visualizations
        • NC: limits reuse because NC is often fuzzy concept + limits societal benefits from academic research


    Herb, Ulrich (2014). Total numbers and shares of Open Access Journals using Creative Commons Licenses as listed by the Directory of Open Access Journals. ZENODO. 10.5281/zenodo.8327

    Total Number of Journals
    Number of Journals using any CC-License


    By gwen


    • 1,760