I work on statistical data analysis in neuroscience at a university, and to that end regularly develop small pieces of software. Most of that software I also publish on GitHub under the GNU General Public License. This implies that I claim and retain copyright.
I used to work in Germany, where in my (possibly mistaken?) understanding of "Wissenschaftsfreiheit" (academic freedom) this was a correct procedure. I now started to work at a UK university and stumbled across a passage in their Intellectual Property Policy:
a) The University waives its rights in the copyright in scholarly works produced solely in the furtherance of an academic career. This includes books, articles in journals, papers for conferences, study notes, original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works, sound recordings, films, broadcasts, and typographical arrangements, multimedia works, photographs, and drawings, provided the material does not form part of a course or teaching materials for the University, and has not been commissioned by the University.
b) The University does not waive its rights in the intellectual property in any underlying materials on which the scholarly work is based, including software, data, databases, designs and patentable inventions.
If I understand paragraph (b) correctly, I cannot continue to publish code under the GPL, because the copyright of the software isn't mine to begin with. The same holds for data from neuroscience experiments, and one might argue that it holds for experimental designs. This does not just seem to prohibit my personal practice, but also to stand in the way of current efforts towards Open Science (open source, open data).
1) Is this policy (b) correct under UK intellectual property law as it pertains to academia?
2) Is such a policy usual at UK universities? If yes, how do academics publishing software usually deal with it?
3) Are there organisations in the UK which could help to convince the university to change the policy? (Open Science advocacy groups)