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Privacy policy

Privacy Statement



Pandemic Response CoLab is a research project of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence, with a goal harnessing the collective intelligence of thousands of people from all around the world to address complex societal problems, starting with global climate change. Pandemic Response CoLab hosts an online community and web Platform where people collaborate with experts and each other to develop, evaluate and select proposals on how to address climate change.

Pandemic Response CoLab is committed to supporting the privacy of individuals who participate in the project or connect with us. This Privacy Statement explains how we handle and use the personal information we collect about our members and site visitors.


What Personal Information We Collect & How We Collect It

The following lists the most common ways in which we collect your personal information:

When you interact with any Pandemic Response CoLab group, page or account on a social media platform, such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, or Pinterest, or when you use your social media account or credentials to log in to the Platform, we may also collect the personal information that you make available to us on that page or through that account, including your account ID or "handle” and your email address.

In addition, for all visitors to our Platform (whether or not they are members), we collect and process information related to web visitor activity and email marketing actions, such as IP addresses and email open rates.

We also use a third-party tracking service to track non-personally identifiable information about visitors to our site in the aggregate. The information we track is limited to web visitor activity and email marketing actions. Our systems also collect information from cookies, web beacons, log files, pixel tags, local storage objects, and similar technologies. Cookies, however, are not required for viewing Pandemic Response CoLab. If your browser is configured not to accept cookies, you will still be able to access Pandemic Response CoLab and its content.

Occasionally, we report quoted feedback from users. We do not attribute feedback to specific individuals unless we obtain permission to use that person's name along with the feedback.

If you have concerns about any of these purposes, or how we communicate with you, please contact us. We will always respect a request by you to stop processing your personal information (subject to our legal obligations).


When We Share Your Personal Information

To perform the functions listed above, it may be necessary to share your personal information with third parties and vendors under contract with us. We do not, under any circumstances, rent or sell your personal information to any outside third party. Some of our site(s) and service(s) contain links to other sites whose information practices may be different than ours. Visitors should consult the other sites’ privacy policies as we have no control over information that is submitted to, or collected by, these third parties.


How Your Information is Stored and Secured

MIT uses risk-assessed administrative, technical and physical security measures to protect your personal information. Only authenticated users with specific permissions may access member data. We use firewalls and regular monitoring to evaluate any attempts at accessing the systems without permission.  Researchers and students performing research or operational functions for us are informed regarding appropriate handling of your personal information.


How Long We Keep Your Personal Information

We consider our relationship with our community to be lifelong. This means that we will maintain a record for you until such time as you tell us that you no longer wish us to keep in touch, or that you change your contact information. We store the personal information that you provide in your member profile. All users can see and edit their profile personal information at any time. Platform administrators can also see and edit that information.


How to Remove Your Information

At your request, we will remove your proposal, comment, profile, and contact information from our files.


The Pandemic Response CoLab sends registered members emails about site activity that they have subscribed to, as well as occasional newsletters. To change how often you receive site activity notifications, please follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your Pandemic Response CoLab account and select "My profile"
  2. Click "Manage profile and settings >>"
  3. On the right column under "Message settings", either:
    • Select "Only send me a daily summary of all activities I'm subscribed to" (once-a-day digest of notifications), or
    • Uncheck all the checkboxes (stop all notifications)
  4. Click Save

To unsubscribe from the Pandemic Response CoLab newsletters, click the "unsubscribe" link in the newsletter itself. You can also click here.

Comments, Proposals, Member Profiles

While a contest is still accepting entries, a proposal can be deleted by the proposal owner. Once a judging period has begun, any proposal submitted for a contest is considered an official entry and cannot be deleted by a proposal author. To request that we remove a comment, proposal or profile, please email us



Rights for Individuals in the European Economic Area

You have the right in certain circumstances to (1) access your personal information; (2) to correct or erase information; (3) restrict processing; and (4) object to communications, direct marketing, or profiling. To the extent applicable, the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation provides further information about your rights. You also have the right to lodge complaints with your national or regional data protection authority.

If you are inclined to exercise these rights, we request an opportunity to discuss with you any concerns you may have by emailing To protect the personal information we hold, we may also request further information to verify your identify when exercising these rights. Upon a request to erase information, we will maintain a core set of personal data to ensure we do not contact you inadvertently in the future, as well as any information necessary for MIT archival purposes. We may also need to retain some financial information for legal purposes, including US IRS compliance. In the event of an actual or threatened legal claim, we may retain your information for purposes of establishing, defending against or exercising our rights with respect to such claim.

By providing information directly to MIT, you consent to the transfer of your personal information outside of the European Economic Area to the United States. You understand that the current laws and regulations of the United States may not provide the same level of protection as the data and privacy laws and regulations of the EEA.

You are under no statutory or contractual obligation to provide any personal data to us.


Additional Information

We may change this Privacy Statement from time to time. If we make any significant changes in the way we treat your personal information we will make this clear on our website or by contacting you directly.

The controller for your personal information is Pandemic Response CoLab. We can be contacted here.

This statement was made effective May 08, 2020.