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Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science

Terms of Use

We are delighted that you show interest in our website and services. Please read these Terms of Use carefully because they are a binding agreement between You and PANGAEA's hosting institutions.

1. Preliminary statement

The information system PANGAEA is operated as an Open Access library aimed at archiving, publishing and re-usage of georeferenced data from earth system research. The system provides a platform at and guarantees long-term availability of its content through a commitment of the following hosting institutions (hereinafter referred to as PANGAEA): the Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar- and Marine Research (AWI) and the Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, University of Bremen (MARUM).

2. Scope of application

These terms of use governs the provisions of the services and the use of these services offered through the PANGAEA platform to their users. The use of the services on the platform is governed exclusively by these terms of use, unless PANGAEA expressly draws the attention of the user to any supplemental terms.

The user can view and print out the currently valid terms of use on the PANGAEA website.

3. Subject Matter of the Agreement

3.1 PANGAEA provides a platform at for institutions or individual scientists for different services. The system is operated in the sense of the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities, which is a follow up to the Budapest Open Access Initiative. The services will be delivered as follows:

3.1.1 Data submission:

  • PANGAEA enables the long-term archiving, publication and dissemination of scientific data and provides scientific data management for projects and scientific institutes according to international standards and protocols:
  • The PANGAEA data submission system accepts data from earth system and environmental research for archiving, publishing and re-usage.
  • The Service provides you with the ability to add, create, upload, submit, distribute or post content, articles, data, text, photographs, images, illustrations, or other information on or to PANGAEA.
  • The PANGAEA issue tracker assists you in providing metadata and uploading data files. Any communication with the PANGAEA data editors goes through this issue tracker.
  • Data curation at PANGAEA includes editorial treatment of deposited data by well-trained data editors from the geological and biological domains. This includes quality control of data and metadata as well as harmonization of metadata, which is supported by using and developing ontologies and vocabularies. Data curation ensures FAIRness (findability, accessibility, interoperability and reusability) of all data by checking for completeness, correctness, and machine readability of data and metadata as well as transfer of data submissions into PANGAEA’s ingest format.
  • A moratorium can be assigned to data so that access may be restricted as defined in section 5.2. Metadata is always freely accessible.
  • Data publication at PANGAEA includes the registration of a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) to allow the citation of each dataset.
  • All data published via PANGAEA are long-term stored (minimum 10 years) on redundant file systems and tapes.

3.1.2 Data Discovery:

  • PANGAEA provides an open access data portal and programmatic access delivered as:
  • Search portal on the website. This includes full-text search with faceted navigation. Users can search the whole data inventory of PANGAEA based on dataset’s metadata.
  • Retrieval and download of metadata in different formats, download of data tables and data files.
  • API services for programmatic access. This includes metadata harvesting via certain protocols.

3.1.3 Data Publication:

  • All published datasets get a unique identifier (DOI name) that links to a splash web page with detailed information like citation, abstract, size, observed properties, related literature.

PANGAEA is entitled to change the services provided at any time, to make new services available or to suspend services. PANGAEA will always take the users legitimate interests into consideration.

3.2 The services available on the PANGAEA platform also includes third party services to which access is only provided. The use of such services may be subject to regulations that differ from these terms of use or may be subject to additional regulations, which the respective service provider will point out to the user in the context of their terms of use. In this case any contractual relationship arises exclusively between the participating service provider and the participating user, PANGAEA is neither a representative nor does PANGAEA become a contractual partner.

3.3 Within the scope of the technical and operational possibilities, PANGAEA endeavour to ensure that the use of the services is as uninterrupted as possible. However, technical faults, such as hardware and software errors, technical problems in the data lines, temporary restrictions or interruptions occur.

4. Registration and Conclusion of a contract

4.1 In order to use certain services via the platform, the user will be required to register and provide the following data ("login data"): e-mail-address (will be verified), a self-chosen username, first and family name and a unique password. Optionally the following additional data may also be provided to allow easier communication: organization (e.g. research institution) and telephone number. Users are also advised to link their account with an ORCID ID. The services can be used by any scientist who has understood, accepted and approved these terms of use and are at least 18 years of age.

4.2 By completing the online registration process, a contract of use is concluded between the user and PANGAEA subject to these terms of use. The subject of the contract of use is the use of the services via the platform

4.3 There is no claim to the use of the services available via the PANGAEA platform; therefore, the user registration can be rejected without giving reasons.

4.4 The user is obliged to handle the login-data with care. In particular, the user is prohibited from disclosing the login data to third parties and/or allowing third parties to access the services via the PANGAEA platform by bypassing the login data. PANGAEA may disable the user’s login-data at PANGAEA’s sole discretion without notice or explanation.

4.5 If the user breaches the obligations under the preceding paragraph 4.4 and his login-data is used by third parties, the user is liable for all activities that take place using the login data. The user is not liable if the user is not responsible for the abuse of the login data. The user shall immediately notify PANGAEA of any unauthorized use of the login-data or any other breach or threatened breach of the security on the PANGAEA platform.

4.6 The user assures that the login data used are correct. The user shall inform PANGAEA of any updates or changes to such login-data as soon as possible.

4.7 Contract language is exclusively English.

5. Conditions of use

5.1 PANGAEA provides different services via the PANGAEA platform covering the archiving, publishing and re-usage of georeferenced data from earth system and environmental research as defined in section 3.1.

5.2 PANGAEA provides an area on the platform for the upload of the user’s research contents from earth and life sciences - within the scope of these terms of use. Research contents mean material including and without limitation research data such as numerical values, text, images, audio and video materials. The uploaded research contents have to match the specific intended research context comply with the strict research orientation of PANGAEA and fully comply with the relevant national and European legal framework for biological environmental and geospatial research data like e.g. the Nagoya Protocol. During the research contents submission, the user is obliged to set a minimum of descriptive metadata to ensure the findability, accessibility, interoperability and reusability of the research contents. Metadata should contain basic structured information about the research contents, so that others can understand and use the contents without further information. The user can request a moratorium of a maximum of two years until the publication of the research contents - after this time research contents will be automatically published by PANGAEA.

5.3 Research contents uploaded to the PANGAEA platform will be subject to different services which includes in particular an automatic and manual curation by domain experts following the FAIR data principles (Finable, Accessible, Interoperable, Re-usable), minting a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for all data, advice and assistance to the user the scope of which is at the discretion of PANGAEA. The curation process and minting the DOI may take up to eight weeks. The user is obliged to proof-read before the final version is published for the review process by third parties (e.g. journals) a temporary handle might be provided upon request of the user. If the research contents are supplementary to a journal article the user is obliged to reference the data in the article.

5.4 The uploading of research content to the PANGAEA platform is not a guarantee that the services will be provided; it is at the discretion of PANGAEA to decide whether the research contents are suitable for the services or not. If the uploaded research content will be not suitable, PANGAEA strives to inform the user within five working days. In this case any uploaded research content and metadata will be completely removed from the PANGAEA platform. In any case research contents are not suitable for the services if the services are not fair used by the user.

The fair use for the PANGAEA platform includes:

  • a maximum service request of three working hours.
  • a maximum data volume of 10 GB.
  • a maximum of one submission per day and ten per month.

PANGAEA reserves the right to refuse the upload of the research contents or to charge fees for uploaded research content beyond the aforementioned limits and/or for third-party fees resulting from data curation, storage and publication, in either case only after consultation of the user.

5.5 The offered service of data search via the PANGAEA platform includes the fair use of the access to the open access data portal and its Application Programming Interfaces (APIs); By accessing the API, the user accepts the currently valid terms of use described here. PANGAEA is entitled at its own discretion to technically limit the retrieval and download of research contents through those interfaces of the PANGAEA platform, which means in particular:

  • Requests significantly beyond the average number of access attempts per time unit by other users of PANGAEA or
  • mass download of metadata and associated data e.g. for the purpose of content duplication or
  • the use of automated systems to extract data from the PANGAEA web pages for commercial purposes except for keeping web search indexes up to date.

Such exceeding inquiries will automatically lead to error messages and/or a forced disconnection from the service unless prior authorization from PANGAEA is requested by the user. Additional usage limitations of specific API services are described in the published API documentation.

5.6 PANGAEA does not assume any responsibility for the uploaded research contents and metadata (contents) - no matter what kind. The user is solely responsible for the contents and undertakes to PANGAEA not to upload any contents which, by its content or its form or design or in any other way violates applicable law, morality or these terms of use, is free form third-party rights, i.e. do not violate the rights of third parties and that the user is authorized to use these contents. In particular, it is not permitted to upload and publish the following contents, which are not to be understood as a final list:

  • contents violate the rights of third parties, in particular personal rights, copyrights, trademark rights and design rights;
  • contents are or contain commercial advertising;
  • contents which are threatening, degrading, insulting, slanderous or untrue,
  • contents which are pornographic, vulgar, obscene, offensive, harassing, discriminatory or glorify violence;
  • contents with depictions of violence;
  • contents which contain propaganda material of unconstitutional organizations or are inflammatory, anti-constitutional, racist or xenophobic.

5.7 The user must refrain from any activity that could impair the operation of the PANGAEA platform or the technical infrastructure behind it. These included in particular:

  • the use of software, scripts or databases in connection with the use of the PANGAEA platform;
  • the automatic reading, blocking, overwriting, modifying, copying of data and/or other content, unless this is necessary for the proper use of the platform.

5.8 Should there be any disruptions in the use of the platform or its functionalities, the user shall inform PANGAEA of this disruption immediately. The same applies if the user obtains information about content published by third parties which obviously violates applicable law or the rights of third parties.

5.9 PANGAEA can temporarily or permanently block or rather delete the user’s access to the services at the PANGAEA platform, if there is concrete evidence that a user is violating these terms of use or the applicable law or if PANGAEA has any other justified interest in blocking or deleting.

5.10 PANGAEA may delete some or all the contents the user uploaded on the PANGAEA platform without notice. The prerequisite for this is that there are concrete indications that the user have violated applicable law, good morals, these terms of use or third party rights, such as copyrights.

6 Rights of use

6.1 By submitting research content to the PANGAEA platform the user grants PANGAEA a royalty-free, irrevocable, transferrable, fully-sublicensable, non-exclusive, spatially and temporally unlimited right to use the research contentwith the corresponding metadata for the respective purposes referred to in section 3.1 and subject to these terms of use. This includes in particular

  • the right to reproduce and process/edit the submitted research content for archive, publication and re-usage purposes,
  • the right to store the contents on PANGAEA server to archive, and publish them, in particular to make them available to the public via the PANGAEA platform and
  • the right to deposit the research content and metadata at associated/collaborating, publicly accessible data centers which are committed to the long-term preservation of research data and providing permanent open access. These data centers are granted the same rights as PANGAEA.

6.2 By submitting research content and metadata to the PANGAEA platform the content will be published under the Creative Commons license CC0 for metadata and CC-BY for data. Exceptions have to be negotiated on an individual basis with PANGAEA. Once a license has been issued, it cannot be changed retroactively.

6.3 The user declares to be entitled to the granting of rights of use made in section 6.1 and assures that the research content submitted is free of third party rights which are contrary to the use for the purpose of this terms of use. The user releases PANGAEA from all claims of third parties arising from the demands of third parties.

7. Protection of content/Responsibility for content

7.1 The research content available on the PANGAEA platform is primarily protected by the copyright or other property rights of PANGAEA, the users or other third parties who have made the respective content available. This content may only be used in accordance with these terms of use and the applicable law.

7.2 PANGAEA does not check the completeness, accuracy and legality of the research contents of the users and other third parties. PANGAEA therefore assumes no responsibility for the completeness, accuracy, legality and topicality of these research contents. This also applies to the quality of the research contents and their suitability for a specific purpose, and insofar as it concerns third party contents on linked external websites.

8. Privacy Policy

All information on the processing of personal data can be found in the privacy policy of PANGAEA. This is available at

9. Liability

9.1 Those contents available on the PANGAEA platform provided by PANGAEA were created with best care and attention and will be updated on a regular basis. PANGAEA does not accept liability for the quality, topicality or completeness of the contents provided by PANGAEA offered on the PANGAEA platform and their suitability for specific purposes. Liability claims which refer to material and/or non-material damage, which are caused by the use or disuse of the offered contents provided by PANGAEA on the PANGAEA platform respectively the use of inaccurate and incomplete contents are excluded, insofar as there is no evidence of willful or gross negligence on the part of PANGAEA. All offers are non-binding and without obligation. For damages resulting from slightly negligent violations of essential contractual obligations, the liability is limited to typical or foreseeable damages. The above limitations of liability also apply in the event of breaches of duty by the legal representatives, senior employees, or vicarious agents of PANGAEA. PANGAEA is liable for damages resulting from injury to life, body or health, which are based on a willful and negligent breach of duty, as well as for damages according to the Product Liability Act without limitations.

9.2 PANGAEA is not liable for damages whose causes are beyond its control, in particular not for damages due to force majeure or for damages caused by users or third parties in violation of these terms of use.

9.3 PANGAEA expressly reserves the right to edit, expand or delete sections of pages, or the entire publication, or to suspend publication temporarily or permanently, without separate announcement.

9.4 PANGAEA does not guarantee that the PANGAEA platform is compatible with the hardware and software of the devices of the user. In addition, PANGAEA does not guarantee that this content is available at any time or at certain times without restriction or that it meets certain performance or functional requirements.

10. Termination of use

10.1 PANGAEA and the user may terminate the user relationship at any time, without the need for a reason. The user may terminate the user relationship by discontinuing the use of the services via the PANGAEA platform. Upon termination the user no longer has access to his user account and the uploaded contents in the user account; PANGAEA reserves the right to delete the account as well as the uploaded contents.

10.2 The termination of usage does not include the deletion of research contents of the user already published via the PANGAEA platform except for the case that the user revokes the rights on the basis of § 42 UrhG (the work no longer corresponds to the conviction of the author); in this case PANGAEA is entitled to charge the costs incurred.

11. Amendment of the terms of use

11.1 PANGAEA is entitled to amend or supplement the provision of these terms of use at any time with effect for the future, if this is required due to legal or functional adaptations of the PANGAEA platform, for example in the case of technical changes.

11.2 An amendment or supplement shall be notified to the user by e-mail at the latest six weeks before its entry into force, without the need to send the details of the amended or supplemented conditions or the overall revision of the conditions; it shall suffice to inform the user of the amendments and supplements made. In the announcement, PANGAEA will provide a link under which the new version for the terms of use can be viewed in its entirety.

11.3 If the user does not object to the amendments and supplements within 30 day of the announcement of the amendments and supplements and continues to use the service, this shall be deemed to be agreement with the amendments and supplements; PANGAEA will point this out separately in the announcement.

12. Final provisions

12.1 Should any provision of these terms of use be or become ineffective, this shall not affect the validity of the remaining provisions.

12.2 These terms of use are subject to German law. The place of jurisdiction for all disputes arising from these terms of use is, as far as legally permissible, Bremen.

These Terms of Use were last updated on 2020-07-28 (version 1.0). Developed in cooperation with: MLS LEGAL (Institut für IT-, Medien- und Immaterialgüterrecht und Rechtsanwalts- und Fachanwaltsgesellschaft, Bremen).