It is difficult for researchers and those supporting them to understand how open access to research data can be legally obtained and re-used. This is due to the fact that European and national laws vary and researchers work across national boundaries.
A possible approach to providing clarity would be that researchers assign a licence to their data. This practice could be incorporated in a code of conduct for researchers.
The report ‘The legal status of research data in the Knowledge Exchange partner countries’ was commissioned by Knowledge Exchange (KE) and written by the Centre for Intellectual Property Law (CIER). The aim of the report was to provide clarity by analysing the intellectual property regimes in the four KE countries and European database law.
Moreover, the report provides three recommendations to achieve better access: making contractual arrangements with authors, harmonisation of European copyright law and setting up of policies on commercial interests.