Legal aspects of open data

Sabina Anderberg. Photo: Niklas Björling, Stockholm University,
Sabina Anderberg. Photo: Niklas Björling, Stockholm University,

Blogpost by Sabina Anderberg. This post is part of our series of posts reporting from the RDA 9th Plenary (P9), 3-7 April 2017 in Barcelona.

Open Aire held a workshop on the legal aspects of open data. The workshop took place at the Universidad de Barcelona. EU Commissioner Jean-Claude Burgelman talked about the ongoing work with Horizon 2020 Open Research Data Pilot.

From 2017 it is mandatory to write a data management plan (DHP) for Horizon 2020 financed projects and making research data open as far as possible with regard to confidentiality, legal, ethical requirements and safety aspects – as open as possible, as closed as necessary.

Data Protection Regulation

The Swedish Data Protection act (PUL) and the earlier 1995 Data Protection Directive will be replaced by the new one Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). There will be a new Swedish Regulation which will begin on 25th of May 2018. The new regulation strengthens the rights of persons in the EU to give them greater control over their personal data.

It is also aimed to facilitate businesses that operate in several different EU countries. Regulation implies a tightening of the rules for how organizations working within the EU may collect, provide access to, store and manage personal data.

Some of the changes are:

  • Strong requirements for consent to collect personal data
  • Persons shall be given access to their own data
  • If the person wants, they will have their data deleted
  • Individuals should be able to easily move their tasks to another organization
  • Organizations affected by an incident must report this within 72 hours

Failure to comply with the requirements of the regulation may amount to a fine of up to EUR 20 million or 4% of global sales. The new regulation therefore involves several changes respective member states and for the institutions’ responsibility for the availability of research data containing personal data.

Presentations with slides from the Open Aire workshop

Can be found on the The Research Data Alliance webpage.

There were several parallel sessions in addition to the general common presentations. Data management plans, requirements for a coordination of those with machine readability. As well as enrichment of metadata was one of the major recurring elements of the conference beyond the system engineering parts that concerned interoperability and validation.


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