Amending submitted responses

This article will look at the following:

Can responses be edited after they have been submitted?

Responses cannot be edited by anyone once the response has been submitted — this includes both Site Admins and respondents. This is to protect the integrity of the data submitted so there can be no question of submitted responses being able to be tampered with, which could cause your engagement process to be called into question. This is critical to give confidence to both respondents and decision-makers.

What if a respondent wishes to make a correction to their response?

Sometimes respondents wish to make amendments to their original response, such as to correct an answer or to perhaps include an additional point they wish to make. This is at your discretion, but if you do wish to log changes like this, there are a few options:

  1. If the activity is still open, you could suggest they submit a whole new response and you can remove their original response (see 'Removing responses' later in this article)
  2. If the activity is closed, they could relay the amendments to you by email / phone and you can manually add a new response into the activity for them. This is easiest if you open their original response in one tab and the 'Add a response manually' link from the dashboard in another tab. Then you can easily copy and paste across their existing answers into a new manually-added response and include the amendments in that new response. Once done, you can remove the original response (see 'Removing responses' later in this article), you can also send them a PDF copy of the new response to confirm this has been done and that their answers are retained with just those tweaks made.

These 2 options are best for allowing you to analyse the updated response along with your other response data.

Another option, but one which is a little more tricky to analyse, is that they could relay the amendments to you by email / phone and you can use the analyst notes section in Analyse Responses to log these alongside their existing response. However, while this will mean that these amendments are collected with their original response and available in the 'Download all responses with analyst fields' export, they will not be visible in the other export of all responses, and the amendments will appear in the 'analyst notes' section in each question when viewing 'Responses Organised by Question' - separate to the original answer to the question. This option is not as effective if the change they wish to make is to a quantitative question response, for example, if they selected the wrong option in a radio button question.

Removing responses

If you want to remove a response because a new one has been submitted, or the respondent requests for you to remove their response, this is possible, however the reason for removal must be entered — for example 'Respondent has submitted a second, updated, response and requested this first one be removed'. Citizen Space will also record who has removed the response. 

Once removed, a response will no longer be included in any listings, exports, reports or statistics for the activity. The only place it will appear is in the list of removed responses, along with the reason for its removal, the date it was removed, and the user who removed it. Removing a response is an action that can be reversed in Citizen Space, but it provides that useful audit trail of why and when a response was removed, and by whom.

Find out how to remove a response in Citizen Space.