Support for Open Data

Towards a new Europeana Data Exchange Agreement

Europeana supports open re-use of the metadata provided by our content providers and aggregators

DEA has been signed so far by the Conference of European National Librarians, EUscreen, the national aggregator for Sweden and Spain, Rijksmuseum, the national Film archives of Denmark, Belgium, Germany and Austria, the national archives of the Netherlands and Sweden, and BHL-Europe! See the complete list.

The Data Exchange Agreement

  • The Europeana Foundation has now officially adopted The Europeana Data Exchange Agreement. The official version replaces the previous Data Provider and Data Aggregator Agreements Data Exchange Agreement.
  • The Agreement is the result of a year-long consultation process with the network of data providers and aggregators.
  • We have also written Usage Guidelines for metadata. These are non-binding, but they set out the responsibilities that people who want to re-use the data should be aware of.
  • Data Exchange Transition Schedule
  • There are now unofficial translations of the DEA in the following languages: HU, LT, RO, FR, SP, BG, IT, DE, PT, PL
  • The Europeana Licensing Framework publication describes all the contractual elements that underpin the relationships between Europeana, its providers and its users.

Why support open metadata re-use?

It brings tangible benefits for heritage organisations:

  • increases traffic to your site
  • allows the Europeana APIs to be widely used
  • provides income-generating opportunities, e.g. for image licensing
  • enriches your data for your own use
  • increases usability and knowledge generation through Linked Open Data applications
  • enables the development of innovative services and new revenue streams

Our metadata principles

Europeana has set out fundamental principles for its dealings with your metadata. These include:

  1. Europeana is committed to consultation with the network of data providers.
  2. Europeana does not intend to make direct commercial use of providers' metadata.
  3. The contribution of data to Europeana does not prevent you from selling metadata to a third party.
  4. Data Providers are not required to provide Europeana with complete metadata for digital objects.
  5. Providing metadata relating to some works in your collections does not create the obligation to provide metadata about complete collections.
  6. Thumbnails and previews will only be used by Europeana. Unless explicitly specified they cannot be reused by third parties.

Strategic outlook

Jill Cousins' presentation* describes how the new agreement relates to the Comité des Sages New Renaissance Report and Europeana's Strategic Plan 2011-2015. It outlines what restrictions the current Agreement imposes that need to be overcome.
Your Metadata and Europeana gives a useful overview of our plans and explains the strategic need for an open metadata licence.
Validity of the Creative Commons Zero 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication with regards to the German Copyright Law. An expert analysis.

Related Europeana initiatives

We have recently released the Europeana API and search widget. APIs are ways of showing Europeana data through third-party sites. We currently limit the use of APIs to network partners because of the non-commercial restriction in the current Agreement. We need an open metadata licence to allow the API to be embedded in educational websites and academic blogs that use Google ads or are linked to commercial services.

We have published a guide to Linked Open Data and Europeana. Watch this animation for background on our motivation (also in French, German, Italian and Spanish). In addition to this, we are exploring Linked Open Data publication through a dedicated pilot project. See for the latest information about available datasets and the way we serve them.

Recommended reading

Visit also our FAQs page

Contact Us

+31 70 3140964