Privacy Policy

1. Sources and Types of Information Collected

VCMI is committed to protecting the privacy of the data we collect from you when visit or use the services we provide through our website, or when you otherwise contact or interact with us.

We recognize personal data as any information related to an identified or identifiable individual.

This policy covers information collected through this website, including ‘personal data’ from website visitors, individuals who subscribe to our newsletter, and project participants or partner organizations.  These categories of data subjects include individuals who reside outside the United States in the European Economic Area (EEA).

Information Collected Automatically:

There is other information that we collect automatically when you visit our site or receive our email marketing communications, through the use of cookies, pixel tags, or similar technologies. These technologies allow us to collect additional information such as your IP address, device and browser type, pages visited, or how many emails that we sent were opened or viewed. For more information, visit our cookies notice.

Third-party technologies: MailChimp; Google Analytics; Survey Monkey Apply;

Newsletter Subscribers: People who are interested in our projects and initiatives, can sign up to receive our newsletter directly on our website. You may opt out of receiving this newsletter at any time.

Project Participants and Partner Organizations: we organize different meetings, events, workshops and conferences related to our process initiatives. As part of our project management, meeting, and logistic services, we usually require your name, contact details, and professional education and background. We may also require your name and email address to utilize technology within our projects.

Clients: To develop projects on behalf of our clients, we collect contact information of the representative from the entity, banking information, and invoices from the company or organization.

Vendors, Collaborators, and Contractors: to provide our services, we also contract with outside companies. To fulfill our contractual due diligence, we will collect information on these companies, including name, tax and bank account information, and contact information for key personnel.

Career Opportunities: We collect information related to seeking employment at Meridian Institute on our website, including your name, email address, and area of interest. To apply for a position at Meridian Institute, click here. For a full employment application, we may collect contact information, employment details including history, benefits, compensation, and performance.

We also offer a fellowship known as the Meridian Institute Ruckelshaus Fellowship and we collect person data from applicants who use the fellowship application portal. The information collected includes name, physical address, email address, educational background, and legal eligibility to work in the US.

2. Use of Information: Purposes and Legal Basis

The purposes for which Meridian Institute collects and uses your personal data may vary depending on the type of relationship you have with us: whether you are a project participant, a newsletter subscriber, an employee or fellow, or a vendor.

We collect and use Personal Data from you according to the following purposes and legal basis:

We have a legitimate interest in conducting the following activities:

Newsletter subscribers: We use personal information to for the delivery of our newsletter. We also use technology to track how many emails that we sent were opened or viewed to better target our content and ensure it is of interest. We have a legitimate interest in promoting our activities and projects to interested individuals.

Information collected automatically: this information is used to support the operation of our website and to analyze the traffic patterns on our site. See our  Cookies section below for more information.

We may need information necessary for entering into or performance of a contract:

Project Participants and Partner Organizations: We use your data to organize or plan our events related to a project or process. Your data can be used to process applications and related fees, book travel, and communicate information about event schedules, diet preferences and opportunities available.  Your data will also be used to utilize technology on a specific project.

Clients: We use our client data to fulfill our contracts with those organizations.

Vendors, Collaborators, and Contractors: We use personal data in order to provide our services, and contract with outside companies.

Career Opportunities: we use personal data related to individuals to provide employment and fellowship opportunities.

3. Disclosures of Third Parties

At times, Meridian Institute engages third party contractors, service providers, and other vendors to help us accomplish the objectives of our organization. There are other circumstances where we are required by law to disclose personal data to third parties such as public bodies or judicial authorities.

We engage with our contractors, and other third parties for the following services: such as email communications and marketing software. If the engagement involves the transmission of personal data, we require the service provider to treat that data consistent with this Policy. A contract to protect the personal data should be executed before any data is disclosed.

We may also disclose information in special cases when it is necessary.

4. International Transfers of Personal Data

If you are located outside the United States and you interact with Meridian Institute’s website or provide us personal data, then your personal data may be transferred to the United States.

We transfer your personal data to the United States whenever you interact with us. The US has not sought, nor obtained adequacy status from the European Union. The level of protection of your personal data is not deemed equivalent to the one in the EEA, unless the receiving organization is self-certified under the EU-US Privacy Shield. As a not-for-profit organization, we are not able eligible to adhere to the EU-US Privacy Shield Principles.

For any project with European clients, we sign standard contractual clauses. When this is not possible, we transfer your personal data based on the derogations in Article 49 GDPR, particularly:

  • Explicit consent, for newsletter subscribers and certain processing in relation to organizing events or facilitating access to information – such as storing photos or documents;
  • necessity to enter and for the performance of a contract for with our project participants; and for working with third party contractors or vendors.

As a safeguard, we directly apply the GDPR provisions to your personal data. We do not engage in any onward transfers regarding your data, beyond the access that our processors have to your data, as a principle. We also carefully select our processors and require that they provide equivalent safeguard mechanisms.

5. Retention Periods

Meridian Institute retains personal data in our records only for the length of time required to fulfill the purpose for which the data was collected.

According to our retention policy, we only keep personal data in our records as long as they are necessary for the purposes they have been processed. The retention period depends on the context in which we process data.

6. Your European Privacy Rights

If you reside or otherwise find yourself in the European Economic Area (EEA), Meridian Institute is committed to processing your personal data lawfully and to facilitate the exercise of your data protection rights granted by European data protection law.

You can contact us at any time to discuss your privacy concerns or to exercise these rights. Email us at

Privacy rights under the European regulation:

Transparency and the right to information. We provide notice to our members, website users and other third parties who interact with us on how we use personal data in our day-to-day activities at the time of collecting personal data, or as soon thereafter as possible. We also publish this privacy notice for greater transparency.

Right to access, rectification, restriction of processing, erasure, and data portability. We provide you with access to your own personal data. In addition, we will rectify your personal data when it is incorrect or inaccurate, and we will ensure the right to erasure, portability and to restriction of processing when these rights are not incompatible with other legal obligations.

Right to object and withdraw consent at any time: For all marketing materials, you can opt-out any time, free of charge. All marketing e-mails provide a link to manage your e-mail preferences in the footer of the communication.

The right to object for other processing activities will be balanced to ensure that it is not incompatible with local regulations or our legitimate interests.

To exercise your rights:

You should send a communication in writing to and provide the following information in order to verify your identity: Your first and last name, phone number, and email address. We will attend to your request in a timely manner within 30 days after receiving your request. If for any reason we need to extend this period of time, we will contact you.

If you are not satisfied with our response, you have the right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority of your habitual residence, place of work, or place of the alleged infringement.

7. Data Security

Meridian Institute is committed to the security, confidentiality and integrity principles. We take commercially reasonable precautions to keep all information obtained from our online visitors secure against unauthorized access and use and we periodically review our security measures.

This site contains links to other sites. While the Meridian Institute strives to link only to sites that share our high standards and respect for privacy, we are not responsible for the privacy practices employed by other sites.

8. Cookies Policy

Our website uses first and third-party cookies, for functionality, analytical, and advertising purposes.

First party cookies refer to cookies that are set by our site, where we are the only ones with access to this information. Alternately, third party cookies or requests allow other parties to have access to the information collected.

What are Cookies and why do we use them?
Cookies are text files that are downloaded on your computer or mobile device when you visit certain websites. Cookies allow a website, for instance to identify a user session (e.g. date and time of visit), recall your preferences (e.g. browser or language preference), gather information about your browsing habits or showing you advertising adapted to your preferences.

Meridian uses essential cookies for our legitimate interest in facilitating your access and use of our website.

What Cookies do we use on our Site?
Our website uses first and third-party cookies for functionality, analytical, and advertising purposes.

Cookies and information captured through this site is stored for a specific retention period. However, you can eliminate these cookies at any time before the expiration date.

We use the following cookies on our site:

  • Cookie Name:

Type of Cookie and Its Purpose: Google Analytics. These cookies allow us to measure the number of Visits to the website and hence understand the Customer’s website experience and segment visitors who are new to the site from those who are returning. This cookie tracks the visitors’ behavior such as visits and interactions with the site. The information collected is used for analytical and advertising purposes. Details on Google Analytics can be found at the following resource:

Owner: Google Analytics


Cookie Name:

Type of Cookie and Its Purpose: Advertising and Targeting. This cookie may use your computer’s IP address, pixel code, referring HTTP location, current HTTP location, search string, time of the access, browser’s time, any searches made on the applicable website and other statistics in order to analyze Log Data from different websites and combine it with other non-Personally Identifiable Information to produce the Reports that are made available on the Site. The purpose of this cookie is to enable web publishers and advertisers to deliver audience segments that are appropriate for their products or services.

Owner: Quantcast


With whom do we share information?
Google Analytics use cookies and other, similar technologies, to collect information about how users use the website. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of our website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google’s behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google. To learn more about Google Analytics, including how to opt out of it, visit

Other Technologies and Sources
We may also use web beacons or similar technology to help us track the effectiveness of our communications. A web beacon (also known as an action tag, a clear gif or pixel tag) is a 1×1 pixel image embedded in a website page used to transparently collect information. For example, we may use a web beacon to count the number of visits to the pages of our site. If you have signed up to receive our e-mail newsletters, we use similar technology to count how many recipients have opened the message and clicked on one of its links.

Your Choices
You can control and delete these cookies through your browser settings as follows:

For Google Analytics cookies, you can also use the following cookie management and disposal tool from Google by downloading and installing the browser plug-in from the following link:

If you want to opt-out of our marketing or newsletter communications, you can use the unsubscribe link located at the bottom of our emails or you can contact us at

If you have questions or concerns regarding our use of cookies you can contact us at:

9. Changes in this Policy

We reserve the right to modify this Privacy Policy at any time. We will duly inform you of any changes.

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