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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. Profits or income derived from commercial sales of products or services are used to fund GEM’s core programs, with an emphasis on providing support to developing countries. Core programs include advancing capabilities in earthquake and multi-hazard risk, pioneering scientific risk assessment methods, and expanding risk and resilience applications to downstream users.

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.

GEM releases software, datasets and models under open licenses as follows:

Software, AGPL

The software license used by GEM, the GNU AGPL, allows users to use the software for any purpose, including commercial purposes, without having to request a specific permission and without needing to become active supporters of our projects.

The AGPL does restrict (re)distribution and integration of the software - in particular it is not permitted to link AGPL software with closed-source software systems, even if this linkage is performed via a network.

Users are permitted to modify AGPL software, however, users must remember to release any derived/modified versions openly under the terms of the AGPL.

In essence, this means that GEM software must remain open and cannot be made into closed products without permission.

Data and Models

The Creative Commons licenses applied to our creative contents, datasets and models, allow users to freely use and modify (by making derivative works) our products and require that the authorship of GEM Foundation is always correctly attributed and in some cases impose some additional restrictions on use. GEM models and datasets are distributed with either the CC BY-SA license which allows commercial use or the CC BY-NC-SA license which prohibits commercial use. Both are Share-Alike licenses; this means that the product and any modified or derived products may only be (re)distributed under the terms of the same license. In essence, this means that GEM models that are released openly must remain open and cannot be made into closed products without permission.

Licensing of products developed by Third Parties

If a third party has developed a model or data set used by GEM, GEM must have an agreement in place in order to distribute or incorporate them into other products. GEM has received permission from all contributors of national and regional hazard models to release the outputs of the hazard models in the global hazard map. In terms of the models themselves, the permissions are generally CC BY-SA or CC BY-NC-SA, or a public license with no restrictions on use. The vulnerability and exposure data used for the risk models are generally GEM’s IP (Intellectual Property) or are publicly available without restrictions (e.g., US HAZUS exposure). In addition, regardless of public licenses, GEM will not value-add or distribute a third-party model without the permission (e.g., license or collaborative agreement) of the third party.

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