The GLI Sheffield Team at the Creative Commons summit in Toronto!

By Leila Eddakille - 27 April 2017
The GLI Sheffield Team at the Creative Commons summit in Toronto!

This week the Creative Commons Global Summit takes place in Toronto, Canada. Eight students from the University of Sheffield are working as policy analysts with Sheffield’s Global Learning Opportunities in the Social Sciences (GLOSS) initiative.

The GLI Sheffield team for Creative Commons summit have landed in Toronto!

It was a long but but smooth journey from Gatwick to Toronto for all the GLOSS students, myself included! The sun was shining when we arrived and we caught a roller coaster (to us!) air rail (to them!) from the airport to the city centre. We arrived at the hotel and picked up lots of leaflets and maps ready to explore what feels like a vibrant city!

What is GLOSS?

Global Learning Opportunities in the Social Sciences (GLOSS) provides students with unique opportunities to understand their courses in an international context, actively engage with international policy makers, stakeholders and partners and be involved in international research undertaken within the Faculty. We are attending as part of the Global Leadership Initiative (GLI) to work as policy analysts and produce policy briefs.

What is the Creative Commons?

The Creative Commons is a movement encouraging knowledge sharing and creativity with the ambitious mission to “build a more equitable, accessible, and innovative world”. At the core of CC’s work is a set of alternative copyright licenses which aim to give the public permission to reuse and ‘remix’ creative work in their own context. The Creative Commons Summit is a new chapter for the Creative Commons movement.

The official Summit aims to strengthen the movement’s current network and expand for a more vibrant, usable and collaborative, people centered Commons. This is set out with three Summit goals:

-        To define sharing and the Commons for our generation

-        To shift the focus to people, moving beyond licenses to enhance collaboration and sharing

-        To discuss the future of the Creative Commons network and grow the CC movement

The Summit will be an important and stimulating arena that will discuss the pressing challenges to and ways in which ties to the creators of culture that makes the commons visible and real can expand; a strategy to shift towards collaboration and active participation.

There are a variety of ‘tracks’ which shape the conference, therefore our policy analyst team have reflected on what we are most looking forward to and which tracks we anticipate focusing on. Our team of Undergraduate and Masters students comprise a diverse range of specialisms and interests which will be beneficial to cover the full scope of the Creative Commons summit.

The Team

The blogs and policy briefs that our GLI team will be writing during the conference will reflect our interests and specialisms. These can be found through the GLOSS website and the Global Policy Journal. Keep an eye out for live tweets throughout the conference, you may even catch images of the CN tower and street racoons in Toronto!


Leila Eddakille (@LeilaEddakille) I am a final year BA Geography undergraduate. I will be focusing on the ‘Community and Movement’ track and am excited to attend talks which focus on building an open community and discuss encouraging prosocial behaviour. I will pay particular attention to ways in which the Creative Commons is inclusive and how the movement can address inequality and marginalisation.

Stef Lo (@1StefanieLo) is a LLB law student currently studying in Salamanca, Spain with Erasmus. She will mainly focus on the 'Future of the Commons' track to channel her particular interest in the barriers to copyright law and how the creative commons is seen to be an easier alternative for authors to protect their creative work. She is also interested more generally in what is determined as an ‘original work’.

Jess Rees (@jreesonfire) is studying towards a Masters in Architecture. Jess is going to focus on the ‘Policy and Advocacy’ track. She is interested in the potential CC provides as a platform to bring diverse people and fields of knowledge together to work towards building a fairer society.

Grace Holliday (@graceholliday) is a MA journalism student, an endeavor funded by the Guardian's Scott Trust bursary. Grace will focus on the ‘Future of the Commons’ and will explore the relationship between Journalism and the Creative Commons.

Nathan Allaby (@nathan_allaby) is a second year BA Business Management undergraduate. Nathan will specifically focus on the ‘Useable Commons’. Entering the conference from a business perspective, he wants to explore how the Creative Commons will bridge the gap between business’ self-interest and the Creative Commons’ aim of sharing knowledge.

Amy Lees (@AmyJenniferLees) is studying a BSc in Economics. Her interests lie in the ‘Future of the Commons’. She is interested in how the Creative Commons can fuel innovation and new ideas which in turn, can fuel growth. With the idea that the Creative Commons reduces asymmetric information Amy will be attending an array of talks which focus on business models which are based on CC.

Julie Baldwin (@Julie__Baldwin) is currently studying towards a Librarianship MA. Throughout the summit, Julie will be focussing on the ‘Spheres of Open’ track  because she is interested in open access and scholarly communications. She aims to analyse how the Creative Commons licenses can help open up research.

Kirsty Franks (@kirstyrachel) is also from a library background and is a distance learning  part time postgrad diploma Library and Information Services Management student. Kirsty believes 'education should be free' and wishes to explore how the Creative Commons offers opportunities to overcome and challenge privileged access to information. She is interested in how the relationship between the Creative Commons and Open Access will unfold in the future through a primary focus on the ‘Community and Movement’ track.

The Team is led by Professor Stephen Pinfield (@stephenpinfield) and Dr Julia Davies (@DrJoolz).


We are excited to be exposed to new ideas and to meet conference speakers and attendees. This afternoon we will be meeting with some of the Creative Commons summit organisers to discuss our role and aims for the summit.

Please check back with Global Policy regularly for the latest blog posts and briefing papers. Or catch up with all of our publications here.



Leila Eddakille (@LeilaEddakille) is a final year BA Geography undergraduate. She will be focusing on the ‘Community and Movement’ track of the Creative Commons Summit.


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