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Data Management and Sharing

This guide provides current resources available to the Brown University community for management, long-term storage, and, when appropriate, sharing of research data as required by funders and journals. Contact data_management@brown.edu for assistance.

Licenses for Sharing Software, Code, Data sets, and Databases

Contact Industry Engagement and Commercial Venturing (IECV) for questions about licensing and patents, including assigning a license to software and research products developed at and owned by Brown University and/or funded by sponsored research. In addition, if you have any intent to commercialize a research product or the research product has commercial potential, then contact IECV before publishing/sharing the research product publicly.

License for Software

Brown University Patent and Copyright Policy Section 2.10 Distribution of Computer Software

"The distribution of University-owned computer software to others for external research purposes must be coordinated with the [IECV]  if the software has potential commercial value or if it is subject to the terms of a sponsored research agreement. [IECV] will provide appropriate wording for the distribution agreement and will arrange for copyright registration. Distribution for internal, Brown University, purposes need not be coordinated with [IECV]  and is permissible with the approval of the author of the work and the Department Head."

This copyright notice from Brown CS grants uses for educational/research purposes and prohibits commercial use.

Open Source Initiative [https://opensource.org/licenses

Provides links to several open source and open access licenses and initiatives for code and software, including BSD, MIT, Apache, and GNU GPL. (N.b. these open licenses are not appropriate for software for which Brown asserts its ownership/copyright under the University's Patent and Copyright Policy, which prohibits incorporation of Brown-owned research into products owned by commercial entities or such entities profiting off Brown-owned research.)

Licenses for Data Sets and Supplementary Materials

Creative Commons [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/

Creative Commons (CC) licenses are used by a growing number of scholarly journals for sharing open access versions of articles and are often used for data and supplementary materials. CC licenses allow creators to be explicit about their wishes for how they intend for their works to be used, re-distributed, adapted, and under which conditions and by whom. In these licenses below, you retain copyright to the work but grant users certain permissions under certain conditions:

CCBY: Users must cite/provide you with attribution and can freely re-use, re-distribute, and create and re-distribute derivative works. (N.b. this license is not appropriate for sharing research products for which Brown asserts its ownership/copyright under the University's Patent and Copyright Policy, which prohibits incorporation of Brown-owned research into products owned by commercial entities or such entities profiting off Brown-owned research.)

CCBYSA: Same terms as CCBY above with the exception (SA= "Share-Alike") if they adapt/create derivative of your work and re-distribute/share their derivative, then they must assign the same license terms to their adaptation/derivative work. (N.b. this license is not appropriate for sharing research products for which Brown asserts its ownership/copyright under the University's Patent and Copyright Policy, which prohibits incorporation of Brown-owned research into products owned by commercial entities or such entities profiting off Brown-owned research.) 

CCBYNC: Same terms as CCBY above with an exception prohibiting use of your work or adaptation/derivative for any commercial purposes (NC = NonCommercial: "not primarily intended for or directed towards commercial advantage or monetary compensation. For purposes of this Public License, the exchange of the Licensed Material for other material subject to Copyright and Similar Rights by digital file-sharing or similar means is NonCommercial provided there is no payment of monetary compensation in connection with the exchange.)

CCBYNCND: Same terms as CCBYNC above with an added exception prohibiting the user from creating and publicly re-distributing/sharing an adaption or derivative of your work.

Licenses for Databases

Open Knowledge Foundations Open Data Commons [https://opendatacommons.org/index.html(N.b. these licenses are not appropriate for sharing research products for which Brown asserts its ownership/copyright under the University's Patent and Copyright Policy, which prohibits the incorporation of Brown-owned research into products owned by commercial entities or such entities profiting off Brown-owned research.)

Attribution License (ODC-By)Requires attribution for re-use, re-distribution, derivative of your data/database

Open Database License (ODC-ODbL)Requires attribution for re-use, re-distribution, derivative of your data/database with "Share-Alike" for any adaptation/derivative of your data/database, the user must assign the same terms if they publicly share it.