#data commons

The Data Commons is our vision of data governance that advances commons-based approaches: those that are based not on private control but collective stewardship and public interest.

The Data Commons approach seeks to address power imbalances between data subjects and entities that hold and use the data. It aims at maximizing societal value of data, instead of simply maximizing the volume and intensity of data use.

Our goal is to support the development of policies that support this vision. The creation of the Data Commons will be enabled by policies that support data use in the public interest, so that society-wide and not just private benefits are obtained. This includes the need for governance models where users’ privacy and data protection are safeguarded while data can be used, and generate value.

Our Data Commons work focuses on policies that fall under the current European Strategy for Data. We advocate for public interest provisions in policy files like the Digital Governance Act and the Data Act.



Council and Parliament find provisional agreement on the Data Governance Act

December 9, 2021 by: Open Future
An overview of the main elements and improvements in the provisional agreement on the Data Governance Act reached by the European Council and the European Parliament on 30 November 2021.

Five things I know about Data Spaces

December 6, 2021 by: Paul Keller
Comment on the recommendation on a common European data space for cultural heritage and the Digital Europe Work Programme 2021-2022

Council agrees on a negotiating mandate on the Data Governance Act

October 11, 2021 by: Open Future
Analysis of the recently adopted negotiation positions of the Council and the European Parliament on the proposal for a Data Governance Act ahead of the upcoming trilogue negotiations.

The Data Act – Another chance for the Data Commons?

September 9, 2021 by: Open Future
A first look at the issues that shape the discussion about the upcoming Data Act, the second legislative element of the Commission's European Data Strategy.

European Parliament misses the opportunity to build the Data Commons

July 30, 2021 by: Open Future
A critical take on European Parliament's ITRE committee report on the Data Governance Act. The report adopted by the ITRE committee represents the negotiation mandate for the trilogue negotiations.

AI_Commons Open licensing in the age of AI

April 29, 2021 by: Francesco Vogelezang et al.
Openly licensed photographs of faces have been broadly used for the training of AI facial recognition systems. This is widely presented as an example of corporate extraction of value from the commons, yet no policy or governance solution has been provided to this challenge.


The argument against property rights in data. Ensuring access to data though non-exclusive access rights.

December 10, 2021 by: Alek Tarkowski et al.
In this policy brief we review the EU policy debate on access and use of data in view of the upcoming Data Act. We provide arguments against the introduction of new property rights–including the sui generis database right–in favor of strengthening data access rights.

Proposal to leverage Article 17 to build a public repository of Public Domain and openly licensed works.

September 21, 2021 by: Paul Keller
White-paper on how to to leverage Article 17 of the Copyright in the Digital Single Market directive to build a public repository of Public Domain and openly licensed works.

The Data Governance Act: Five opportunities for the Data Commons

June 23, 2021 by: Francesco Vogelezang et al.
In this policy brief, we present five issues related to the proposal for the Data Governance Act (DGA) that are crucial to achieve the policy goal of building Data Commons in the European Union.


September 21, 2021

Protecting Open Licenses in the EU Copyright Reform at CC Global Summit 2021

December 1, 2021
Presentation of the White Paper: "Proposal to Leverage Art.17 of CDSM Directive to build a public repository of Public Domain and openly licensed works"
September 22, 2021

AI_Commons at CC Global Summit 2021

December 1, 2021
Discussing with the broad Open Movement how to reconcile Open licensing and AI training
November 18, 2021

MyData in the Netherlands

August 30, 2021
A closer look at data governance and the European data strategy: the Data Governance Act & the Data Act
September 20, 2021

Rethink Design

August 24, 2021
DCODE Summer School 2021: Introducing DCODE challenges, outlining new design ideals for our digital future, and setting the ground for a shared vocabulary.