The ESRF Council endorsed the implementation of a Data Policy for Public Access for data taken at the ESRF beamlines in December 2015. The Data Policy is based on the PaNdata Data Policy which was a deliverable of the European FP7 project PaN-data Europe delivered in 2011. The Data Policy for publicly funded research defines the ESRF as the custodian of raw data and metadata. This means the ESRF will provide users with automatically collected metadata for all publicly funded experiments carried out on its beamlines, including the beamlines from Collaborating Research Groups. The metadata will be stored in the ICAT metadata catalogue which can be accessed online to browse and download (meta)data. The experimental team will have sole access to the data during a three-year embargo period, renewable if necessary. After the embargo period, the data from publicly funded research will be released under a CC-BY-4 licence with open access to everyone. Data generated by publicly funded experiments have a DOI created automatically for them so they can be cited in publications. Experimental teams can release their data before the end of the embargo period by creating a DOI for a publication or by sending a request to

Data produced by commercial or proprietary beamtime are reserved for the group paying for the beamtime and are considered under embargo forever unless requested to be opened by the group concerned. Further details on how data from commercial beamtime are governed are described in the Data Policy for Commercial Access.

The ESRF data policy comes very timely as the scientific landscape in Europe and worldwide changes. The ESRF data policy implements the principles of Open Science and will enable users to publish results derived from data taken at the ESRF without further action on their part other than referring to the ESRF data policy. The ESRF can assist users to fill in Data Management Plans (DMPs) for data to be produced at the ESRF.

When applying for beam time it is necessary to accept the appropriate Data Policy.


The ESRF Data Policy is implemented on all beamlines since 2021.

Any questions concerning the Data Policy or its implementation can be addressed to