Open to the World: Celebrating 20 years of Creative Commons licences

Creative Commons 20th anniversary header image.

Creative Commons, the international organisation dedicated to sharing knowledge and creativity, celebrates 20 years of Creative Commons licences. The organisation provides:

Creative Commons licenses and public domain tools that give every person and organization in the world a free, simple, and standardized way to grant copyright permissions for creative and academic works; ensure proper attribution; and allow others to copy, distribute, and make use of those works

Creative Commons licences have played an important role in enabling the University of Edinburgh to achieve it’s mission and vision to share knowledge and make the world a better place, while ensuring that our teaching and research is diverse, inclusive, accessible to all and relevant to society.

Two of our formal University policies encourage the use of Creative Commons licences;

  • Open Educational Resources Policy, which encourages staff and students to use, create, and publish OERs to enhance the quality of the student experience, increase the provision of learning opportunities for all, and improve teaching practices.
  • Research Publications & Copyright Policy, which allows researchers to make their journal articles and conference proceedings available on an open access basis as required by research funders under Plan S.

In keeping with our commitment to open knowledge, several of our teaching and learning policies, including our OER Policy, are available to download and re-use under Creative Commons licence.

As a world leader in digital education, the University of Edinburgh has a long-standing commitment to providing, and widening access to, high quality online learning opportunities through open education and OER.  The University has shared a wealth of teaching, learning and research resources under Creative Commons licence, in addition to many unique manuscripts and artefacts from our historical and cultural heritage collections. 

Our Creative Commons licensed content includes: 

The University’s commitment to sharing open knowledge also enables us to contribute to achieving the aims of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and helped us to meet the unique challenges posed by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

We remain committed to continue sharing our knowledge, our teaching, learning and research resources with the help of Creative Commons licences to achieve our 2030 Strategy, ensuring that the University of Edinburgh remains open to the world.

Header image by Steve Snodgrass, CC BY 2.0.