Building communities together: our policies, licenses and agreements

As DataCite continues to scale as a global community with members across 43 countries, it is important that we make sure our operations and policies align to support our growing community of members.

Earlier this year we set out the Vision 2020, which included optimising internal operations, systems and processes as one of the strategic priorities for this year. As such, we have spent time reviewing our policies, licenses and agreements with the assistance of our legal counsel. Following this work and discussions in the board meetings, we are pleased to share an update on several key outcomes:

  1. Member agreements. Our members join DataCite and agree to the DataCite statutes as the overarching governance document for DataCite. In addition to joining as a member of the association, most of our members also make use of DataCite DOI registration services and therefore require additional clarity around the use of these services. We now have an updated agreement that can be used for any member that makes use of DataCite DOI registration services. We will be contacting all existing members about the new agreement over the next year.
  2. Privacy policy. As a global organization, it is important that we adhere to various policies regarding our processes and services. In particular, your privacy is of critical importance to us, so at DataCite we have a few fundamental principles related to privacy. Following work with our legal counsel, we were able to reflect these principles in our updated privacy policy and update some of our workflows in accordance with the privacy policy.
  3. Datafile license. In line with our commitment to openness and ensuring that our members DOIs are reuseable, we worked with our legal counsel to consider the various licensing options available. This follows continued discussions over the last four years and desire from many stakeholders in the community to clarify the specific license associated with the DataCite datafile. In accordance with DataCite statutes, the board approved that the DataCite metadata file be released under CC0 license. CC0 is a useful tool for clarifying that DataCite does not claim copyright in a work anywhere in the world. Although CC0 does not legally require individuals to cite the source, it does not affect the ethical norms for attribution in scientific and research communities. We continue to openly advocate for citation and attribution of research globally.

We continue to seek input from our members and community as our infrastructure scales. Please feel free to provide any feedback or send questions to