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Terms of use

All of GEM’s products are freely available for public good, non-commercial use, but they may have different license restrictions. ​Open and free distribution of data, models, and tools remains at the core of GEM’s work, further enhancing their availability and accessibility.



Thank you for your interest in GEM products and services!

GEM’s products and services are provided by the GEM Foundation.

These Terms of Use ('Terms') would like to provide you with a ‘how-to’ guide for accessing and using GEM’s website, products, and services ('Products'). Please read the various sections of these Terms carefully, and contact us if you have any questions.


1. Data Licensing


  • General GEM Data Licensing Policy


GEM licensing policy is to initially release data and models under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0), and after 18 months to re-release the same data and models under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 (CC BY-SA 4.0).


Copyright (C) 2015 GEM Foundation




If you have any questions or if you wish to seek permission to use this data beyond what is offered by CC BY-NC-SA 4.0, including use in commercial/for-profit contexts, please contact the GEM Foundation at

Where possible GEM datasets include this message as a header at the top of the file. In cases where it is not possible to embed the notice inside the dataset, for example, when using binary file formats, the file(s) is or are distributed with an accompanying text file which contains the copyright and license notice text.


  • Products released under other licenses


ISC-GEM Global Instrumental Earthquake Catalogue and Appendix to the Catalogue


Versions 1.00, 1.01, 1.02 and 1.03 of the ISC-GEM Global Instrumental Earthquake Catalogue and Appendix to the Catalogue were released under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0).

Version 1.04, released on 5th November 2013, was instead released under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0).


SHARE Regional Hazard Model


Seismic Hazard Harmonisation in Europe SHARE is a Collaborative Project in the Cooperation programme of the Seventh Framework Program of the European Commission. SHARE's main objective is to provide a community-based seismic hazard model for the Euro-Mediterranean region with update mechanisms.

SHARE data and products are released under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-SA 3.0) license.

To learn more please visit  the European Facility for Earthquake Hazard & Risk (EFEHR) website.

2. Software Licensing

  • General GEM Software Licensing Policy


The GEM Foundation normally releases software under the terms of the GNU Affero General Public License (AGPL). This license permits use, modification, and (re)distribution of GEM software provided that all modifications and additions are also distributed under the terms of the AGPL.


In some cases it is not possible or not appropriate to use the AGPL, for example when GEM software is based on existing open source software that uses a different and 'incompatible' license (a license that does not permit mixing with software which is released under the AGPL). 

  • Products released under other licenses


IDCT Direct Observation Windows tools

The Direct Observation tools for Windows for Inventory Data Capture are developed within the context of the IDCT project. The tools are based on the open-source GIS, MapWindow, which is released under the Mozilla Public License version 1.1. GEM will distribute the Direct Observation tools under the terms of the MPL version 2.0 as permitted by section 6.2 of the MPL 1.1.

GEM standard documents license


Typically GEM Foundation Images, Maps, Infographs, Video, Photos, Documents, Reports, Manuals, Best Practice - not including datasets, are released under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution- ShareAlike 4.0 (CC BY-SA 4.0).


About Creative Commons

Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organisation which has developed a suite of online licenses, which permit varying degrees of copying and reuse of content, and can be embedded into a range of resources. These licenses can be used by anyone to communicate how their work can be used, shared and repurposed. You can use CC licenses to provide access to resources, as long as you own the rights to the resources, or have specific permission from the rights holder to do so.

Creative Commons licenses apply alongside copyright, so you can modify your copyright terms to best suit your needs. Further information on the use of Creative Commons licenses can be found at:


Other useful links:


3. Contact


If you have any questions about licensing or if you wish to seek permission to use GEM data or software beyond what is offered by our standard licenses, including use in commercial/for-profit contexts, please contact the GEM Foundation at:





The content in this website, our products and services are provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, whether express or implied. 




While we endeavour to keep the content up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the website products, services, or related graphics contained in the Products for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such content is therefore strictly at your own risk.

GEM takes no responsibility and assumes no liability for any content that users or third party posts or transmits using our products. You understand and agree that you may be exposed to content of our contributors and collaborators that is inaccurate, objectionable, inappropriate for children, or otherwise unsuited to your purpose.

In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of our Products.




GEM relies on the contribution of a very diverse community, whose work and inputs make GEM products and services more robust, complete and responsive to earthquake risk assessment globally.

Together with individuals and organisations worldwide, we are continuously working to produce important contributions to earthquake risk mitigation and the science on which it is funded. Most of these contributions will find their way into the OpenQuake Platform, others will be stand-alone tools or resources that will be accessible from the GEM website, including: 

  • Global uniform earthquake-related datasets

  • Input models for risk modeling, global and regional, (rated by GEM and based on a set of criteria under discussion with GEM’s scientific community)

  • Maps, indices, graphs and many other hazard and risk projections

  • Methods, Best Practice and Guidelines

  • Knowledge Sharing Apps and Resources

  • Open-Source Software Tools


GEM’s mission is to bring data, tools and knowledge together and to share it. We invite you to join us in this fundamentally cooperative effort.

Please visit the products & services page to see the list of GEM products. To learn more on which products are already available and how you can contribute, please follow the links provided on the products’ pages.

Each contribution submitted to us will be reviewed, and those accepted will be credited online. Copyright always stays with the author, but by submitting your files you agree for your contributions to be released under the license(s) recommended on GEM contribution submission forms.

Generally we recommend that you select to license your contributions under the terms of CC BY-SA 4.0

Other licensing options may also include the following: 


You are also welcome to contribute to various parts of our GEM website by posting comments, text or any information or feedback you might have. When you contribute, you do so on the basis that the contribution is either your own work or is information freely available in the public domain.


  • Inappropriate Content


Content that: 

  1. contains vulgar, profane, abusive, racist or hateful language or expressions, epithets or slurs, text, photographs or illustrations in poor taste, inflammatory attacks of a personal, racial or religious nature;

  2. is defamatory, threatening, disparaging, grossly inflammatory, false, misleading, fraudulent, inaccurate, unfair, contains gross exaggeration or unsubstantiated claims, violates the privacy rights of any third party, is unreasonably harmful or offensive to any individual or community;

  3. contains terrorist-related material;

  4. or in other way offends and hurts people, 


will be removed. 

GEM's comments and messages are ‘post-moderated’. This means that comments will be published automatically and reviewed by GEM after publication. While GEM reviews public comments on a regular basis, there may be times when inappropriate or offensive posts or comments that do not meet the terms of use appear before they can be removed.

Licensing Policy
Disclaimer and Limitation of Liability
Contributions Licensing
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