Initial research for the Cortex catalogue was carried out by Victoria Stobo, Postgraduate Researcher at CREATe, University of Glasgow, and Andrea Wallace, Lecturer in Law at the University of Exeter. 

Victoria’s research explores the effect of copyright law on the digitisation of UK archive collections, and the ways in which risk management can improve the availability of collections online. Andrea’s research concerns the impact of digital technologies on the preservation and dissemination of cultural heritage, especially when it comes to the reproduction of public domain works. Between them, they have more than ten years of experience researching and working in the digital humanities and digital cultural heritage. 



Content is made available primarily through links to the original material. In general, the Cortex does not host content, apart from some national and European policy consultations for which we have gathered together material in the public interest. Whenever evidence submitted to these consultations is made available online, it is generally only available for a short period of time. We want to ensure these materials remain publicly available in the longer term.

At present, open content is prioritised: we only catalogue material that is publicly accessible online. This may change in the future. 



Within the catalogue, material is presented in reverse chronological order; this way, you can be sure you are always looking at the most up-to-date content available online. Search functionality, once available, will enable different points of entry and pathways to engage with the catalogue. Our Keywords and Tags will offer other ways to access and play with content. 

Catalogue entries are based on the Dublin Core metadata standard, with some minor, local modifications developed specifically for the Copyright Cortex. Our schema is available here.

A commentary field has been included within the entries to provide extra contextual detail about the works and resources that are catalogued. For example, we might: indicate that relevant legislation has been amended or reformed since the work in question was created; provide additional background information about a specific piece of research, significant litigation, or proposed legislative reform; or, identify potential conflicts of interest.



We have developed a series of icons to accompany catalogue entries. These icons are available to download here.


Journal article, working paper or case study 


Periodical (newspaper, magazine, and so on)




Online resource


Audio recording


Audiovisual work




Dataset or software






Consultation or consultation paper


Other contribution



We illustrate catalogue entries with images from content that has been made openly available by cultural heritage institutions around the world. At the Copyright Cortex, we want to celebrate and promote the use of these open collections. Images are randomly allocated to catalogue cards, so every time you visit your experience will be different, and organized according to featured themes. 

Metadata for all the images that feature on our catalogue cards can be found in the Cortex Image Bank

If you have any suggestions for material or themes please do let us know. You can contact us at: 



Like our use of images, our choice of typeface celebrates open content. 

The principal typeface used for Cortex content is Cooper Hewitt, designed by Chester Jenkins and commissioned by the Cooper Hewitt museum. Cooper Hewitt is an open source typeface available for download on the museum’s website and was created as part of the museum’s open source programme. You can find out more about the Cooper Hewitt font here:

In addition, on the website, we also make use of Open Sans, designed by Steve Matteson and commissioned by Google. You can find out more about the Open Sans font here: