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The (legal) datafication of open science

The process of datafication of many aspects of our society, of the economy, and of the creative and scientific process has emerged as a distinctive element of this decade. This keynote will illustrate how datafication has translated into legal contentions in open science.

Published onApr 27, 2023
The (legal) datafication of open science


Open science is on the rise and so is “data legislation”. With the latter term, in the legal field, we refer to a relatively new wave of legislative interventions, mainly at the EU level, that regulate in one way or another “data”. Possibly the most famous example (and one of the oldest) is the GDPR, which in the field of personal data protection has been a landmark piece of legislation since 2016. However, in this paper, the focus is not on personal data, but, mainly, on non-personal data and on how recent legislative interventions in this sector will impact open science. Some of these new laws (such as the Open Data Directive and the Data Act proposal) are discussed and the interaction with older legislation, which we assume apply to data (often wrongly e.g. “data ownership”) such as in the case of copyright and related rights, is investigated. Moreover, new regulatory mechanisms and concepts in the field of data (for example the concept of “research data” and “data portability”) are presented. Finally, the concept of Common European Data Spaces is discussed as a possible way to address the tensions that we can still observe between different regulatory approaches in the field of open science with regard to data.



Author biography

Thomas Margoni (KU Leuven) is research professor of Intellectual Property Law at the Faculty of Law and Criminology and a member of the Board of Directors at the Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP). His research concentrates on the relationship among law, data, and technology. Currently, Thomas focuses on the changes in the creation, access, transformation, and distribution of knowledge and information brought by technologies like the Internet and AI.

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