- The Framework
- Open Government Licence
- What the Open Government Licence covers
- Guidance and FAQs
Attributions and acknowledging the source
The Open Government Licence requires you to attribute the information provider and/or source of the information. Attribution statements usually include the title of the information resource, if applicable, its owner and/or creator and the date it was published or created. Where possible, you should also provide a link to the information used, if it is available online, and to the Open Government Licence.
Information providers are advised to specify an attribution statement for users where they offer information under the Open Government Licence. If the information provider has not specified a particular attribution statement and where to insert this statement in your product or application, this does not mean that you do not have to give attribution. It means that you will have to give attribution to the best of your ability with the information you do have. If the information contains any copyright or database right notices, you must leave those notices intact.
If you are using information from several information providers and multiple attributions are not practical in your product or application, you may use the following statement:
- Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v1.0
If it is not practical to cite all sources and attributions in your product prominently, it is good practice to maintain a record or list of sources and attributions in another file. This should be easily accessible or retrievable, so that all sources and rights owners are properly acknowledged and there is a clear trail of provenance should anyone ask.
You should also provide a link back to or the Open Government Licence URL, where possible.
Why is an 'attribution statement' necessary?
An attribution statement identifies the name, creator, and date of the information, and acknowledges them appropriately. It also means it can be identified and accessed easily by others wishing to use the same information. The attribution statement demonstrates further the source of the information and its use under the Open Government Licence.
Example attribution statements
Example 1: Standard publication acknowledgement
- [Insert title, author department/organisation, year of publication, any applicable copyright or database right notice]. This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence (link).
Example 2: If document accessed through a website
- [Insert title, author department/organisation, year of publication, any applicable copyright or database right notice]. This information is licensed under the terms of the Open Government Licence (link). (www.department.gov.uk/document, accessed DD/MM/YY).
Example 3: Information from multiple sources
- Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v1.0.
It is good practice to maintain a record or list of sources and attributions in another file or location, if it is not practical to include these prominently within your product.