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[TEMPLATE] Data Handling Statement

This is a template based on a data handling statement we used for a research project. Replace {org} with the name of your organization, and {client} with the name of your client.

About the project

[Information about the project and its goals.]

[Information about why the participant is invited to take part.]

Your participation

You are eligible to participate in this study, but your participation is completely optional.

If you choose not to participate**,** {client} will not be notified. In this case we will retain your organization’s name and the fact that you have decided to not participate for the purposes and period of the study, but delete all other data {client} has provided us about you and your organization.

If you choose to participate, {client} will ****also not be notified. All data you share with us about your experiences working with {client} will be anonymized. We will not share your name, your colleagues’ names, your organization’s name or location, or any other clearly identifying information with {client} or anyone else.

Examples:

If you participate, we may share anonymized quotes like this.

  1. “We got a lot of help with our major program. {client} was able to connect us to many people who helped us get our operations up and running quickly.”
  2. “We are spread so thin, it’s stressful to feel like there are other items in our to-do list. I never really know if they are requirements for our program or are just optional extras we can do if we feel like it.”
  3. “We were nervous when they said that we were receiving less than we’d hoped for in our renewal, but they helped us connect with other funders to make up the difference and it turned out ok.”
  4. “We have someone officially on our board, but they haven’t come to a single meeting.”
  5. “I’m not sure I agree with this whole investment-oriented funding philosophy.”

We will never include identifiable information like this.

  1. “We got a lot of help with our Diverse Voices program. {client} was able to connect us to many people in South Africa that helped us get our operations up and running quickly.” – Miranda, Nairobi
  2. “We are spread so thin since we lost both our office manager and our executive director within a month, it’s stressful to feel like there are other items in our to-do list. I never really know if they are requirements for our program or are just optional extras we can do if we feel like it.”
  3. “At first we thought we were going to be able to get $750k in our renewal. We were nervous when they said that we could only get $500k, but they helped us connect with other funders to make up the difference and it turned out ok.”
  4. “Michael McFee is officially on our board, but he hasn’t come to a single meeting.”
  5. “Our investment lead and I spent many hours at the beginning talking about {client}'s investment-oriented funding philosophy. I’m not sure I agree with it, but Mala seems to know what she’s doing.”

The details

We now want to tell you about how we will handle your data should you choose to participate in this study. This is important to make sure you can give meaningful consent to participate. It’s okay if you don’t want to read all of this information, but we want it to be available to you.

If you choose to participate in the project, we have received or will collect:

  • Your name and email address
  • Your organization’s name, location, and focus
  • Information about your relationship with {client}, including grant/investment amounts and timing
  • Details about your experiences interacting with {client} staff, {client} processes, and other dimensions of your relationship with {client}.

Purpose & ownership

We are processing this data on behalf of {client} to complete the project. {org} does not claim ownership over it.

We may share with {client} a set of anonymized quotes that do not include name, organization, location, or any other identifying information. (See above for examples.)

We may also share these anonymized quotes as part of a report that will be shared with the public. Again, no identifying information will be included. Readers of this report will not know your name, your organization’s name, your location, details about your organization’s activities, or other information that could uniquely identify you.

We will not otherwise sell, rent, or release data gathered as part of this project to any entity. In particular, we will not share personal or identifying information with any entity for any purpose.

Data handling & longevity

Participants’ identifying information, such as names and locations, will be stored separately from anonymized project data. (Basically, we’ll keep a special spreadsheet that assigns participant names to participant numbers, and use participant numbers in all other documents.)

Identifying information (including the spreadsheet that maps participant names to numbers) will be securely deleted from all {org} storage within one month of the completion of the project (currently slated for {date}).

Data storage

We process and store data on computers that have encrypted storage drives.

We also process and store pseudonymized data (which doesn’t include personal identifying information) on Google Drive. Our Google accounts are protected using 1) passwords and 2) two-factor authentication.

We use Google Calendar to manage events and appointments. We will maintain a special calendar for this project, and send invitations to participants to meetings using it. We will delete this calendar within one month of the publication of the public project report.

Our email is through Gmail. We will use a project-specific email account for project communication, including arranging meetings and asking follow-up questions. We will permanently delete the account within one month of completing the project.

Questions?

If you have questions or concerns about this project and its goals, please contact:

  • {org's email}
  • {client email}

If you have questions or concerns about {org}’s data-handling practices, please contact {org's data protection contact}.

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