Creative Commons awarded $10M grant from Hewlett Foundation to support renewed strategy

Ryan Merkley

brain

On behalf of the Creative Commons staff, Board, Affiliate Network, and global community, we are thrilled to announce that the Board of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has unanimously approved an unrestricted multi-year grant in the amount of $10 million to Creative Commons.

The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation has been a proud founding partner and longstanding supporter of Creative Commons; In particular, CC and Hewlett have worked closely together to innovate in education — CC licenses are at the heart of Open Educational Resources, and CC is an active and engaged leader in the OER movement. Hewlett is also an adopter of CC — the Foundation has implemented an open policy for many grantees, requiring open licenses on grantee outputs to ensure maximum use and re-use.

The grant comes at pivotal time as a major investment in CC’s new strategy. “Creative Commons is the chief steward of a large and growing movement for openness, a movement to make knowledge more freely available, to foster sharing and collaboration, and to spur advances and improvements that make the world a better place for everyone,” said Hewlett Foundation President Larry Kramer, in announcing the grant.

With this critical lead support and tremendous vote of confidence in our work, Creative Commons is now able to invest in its next organization phase, a renewed vision for not just the licenses but for the broader commons movement. “Our renewed strategy will be aimed at building a more vibrant, usable commons powered by collaboration and gratitude,” said Creative Commons CEO Ryan Merkley. “This is how we light up the commons: Creators need to be able to easily find the very best content in the commons, share feedback, give gratitude, get analytics, and work together to build networks around their interests and passions.”

This effort to build a more connected global commons is nothing short of transformational. It’s a strategic shift for Creative Commons that will require us to develop new infrastructure, new tools, and new resources; and it will require a new level of investment. Lead support from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation provides key momentum and will be critical in catalyzing this new level of investment, part of a much broader effort to ensure long term organizational sustainability and a thriving global commons for decades to come.

Our deepest thanks to The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and to all of you who have supported CC over the years. And for those of you who are new to CC, we welcome you to our community and look forward to sharing all our big wins with you. We are humbled by the generous show of support and feel privileged to be able to take on the important work ahead.