3. Drug Discovery: Using open resources

(This video can be downloaded from Media Hopper Create.)

What are the conditions that you look for in the licenses?

As a commercial company Parkure must ensure that the resources it makes use of can be used for commercial purposes.  Importantly, Parkure must be able to retain any derivative knowledge that is developed using the resources for commercial purposes.

What about the Open Source Software?

As well as checking that the software can be used for commercial purposes, Parkure also considers the community surrounding the software to ensure that it will be supported during use. This support must needs to cover things like advice on installation, configuring the software, customising the software for specific purposes and simply asking questions when they run into problems.

What are the main types of Licence that Parkure use?

The main types of licence that Parkure use are “Attribution” licences. These are licences where the main condition is only citing or attributing the research to its source.

Attribution – means that you must give credit using a citation and indicate if changes were made.

When using Open Source Software they have experience using the MIT Licence and the BSD licence.  These are both popular licenses approved by the Open Source Initiative. Read more https://opensource.org/licenses

MIT License https://opensource.org/licenses/MIT

BSD License  https://opensource.org/licenses/BSD-3-Clause

How does Parkure choose between a proprietary resource and an open resource?

It is important that any licences Parkure use allow commercialisation and are permissive. This means that any derivative product they produce can be used in any way they want. Lysimachos believes that community resources that are maintained by an active group are generally better quality and have less bias than proprietary resources. So proprietary resources will only be used if there is no alternative.

When it comes to software tools it is a case of finding the right tool for the job. In this case it sometimes makes more sense to use paid for resources and services.  However, Open Source and Free Software generally allows for more customisation, which is a priority in a highly specialised company such as Parkure. Customisation of proprietary tools can be prohibitively expensive.

Conditions of use in the open resource community are generally more permissive than they were several years ago. This reflects what we know from Open Source Software (OSS) communities, that if a licence is too restrictive, the size and diversity of the community will be limited and use of the software will die off.


See how many ‘Attribution’ licenses you can find using the range of online resources in this article, and by searching online. When you have established a list, compare the differences and discuss what types of project or activities they would be useful for.

You can find out more about licences that require an attribution on Creative Commons with the following links: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/

CC BY-SA (Attribution-ShareAlike) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en

CC BY-ND (Attribution-NoDerivatives) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/deed.en

CC BY-NC (Attribution-NonCommercial) – https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/deed.en

CC BY-NC-SA (Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/deed.en

CC BY-NC-ND (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/deed.en

Find out more

Figshare: Figshare is an open research resource. This article lists the most common licenses that are used for research outputs on the Figshare site. https://support.figshare.com/support/solutions/articles/6000079045-a-guide-to-copyright-and-licensing

tl;drLegal: This has another list of open source licences you can review. https://tldrlegal.com/licenses/tags/Open%20Source