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Deleting response data

Natalie Williams -

You may find yourself in a situation where you need to delete some of your response data.

Citizen Space allows you to:

+ delete a whole consultation and all of its response data (permanent and cannot be undone)

+ delete an answer component and all of its response data, e.g. all email addresses (permanent and cannot be undone) - see more details below in Scenario 1

In addition on your behalf, Delib can:

+ delete part or all of an individual's response (permanent and cannot be undone) - see more details below in Scenario 2


Scenario 1: you need to delete the response data belonging to a particular field in a consultation (e.g. to remove personal data)

Some organisations have a policy of deleting all of the personal data from a consultation after it's been stored and processed for a certain period of time, e.g. two years. In this scenario, you can delete the data you need to by deleting the answer components in which that data was collected:


1. On the consultation dashboard, retract the consultation using the red button. (You need to temporarily retract the consultation from the public view to be able to edit the Online Survey part).



2. You'll need to carry out an additional step here if you use Citizen Space's response publishing feature & may have published responses displaying data that you're planning to delete (e.g. name or organisation) on the published response tiles. Select this link to see details of the additional step.

If you don't use response publishing or haven't published responses on this consultation, continue to Step 3.


3. From the dashboard, go into "2. Online Survey" and using the left-hand navigation go to the question that was asking for personal data.


4. Under the question, find the answer component in which the personal data was collected and select the 'Delete' button above that component.



5. Citizen Space will display a warning to let you know you're deleting a component that contains response data & that this action cannot be undone. If you're confident that you want this data to be permanently deleted, select the red 'Delete' button.



6. Remember to re-publish your consultation using the green button on the dashboard, so that it reappears on your hub.



 * Additional step for users of response publishing: From the dashboard, select "Edit 'Published Responses' Page". Under the heading "Response Excerpts", check whether any of the data fields you're planning to delete are currently selected to display on the response excerpts (i.e. the individual "tiles" that appear on the page of published responses.) If they are, change the dropdown selection so that they are no longer selected and remember to scroll down and save your changes via the blue button at the bottom of the page. Then select this link to return to Step 3 above.



Scenario 2: you need to delete one or more individual responses

Citizen Space allows you to remove individual responses from your dataset & stop them being processed, but it doesn't give you the ability to permanently delete an individual response. This is by design to protect against mistakes resulting in data loss and to defend against any real or perceived risk of tampering with individual responses.

However, if a respondent requests for their data to be deleted or 'forgotten', Delib has the power to permanently erase part or all of an individual response on your behalf if you send us a clear written instruction. In that scenario please contact us via and let us know which consultation it is and any details you have about the respondent and their response.