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Resources & FAQs

Climate CoLab Resources

Climate Change Resources

Frequently Asked Questions

General User Questions
Proposals & Contests
Integrated Proposals
Prizes, Voting, & Judging
Technical Questions

General User Questions

How can I create a profile?

Register on the site (or login if you have already registered). Click on the blue triangle to the right of your user name in the upper right corner of the screen and select "My profile". Once on your profile page, select "Manage profile and settings". Fill out and save your profile (don't forget to upload a photo!)

How can I retrieve my password if I've forgotten it?

Please follow this screencast to easily reset your password.

I'm getting too many Climate CoLab emails!  How can I get fewer emails or unsubscribe?

The Climate CoLab sends members emails about site activity that they have subscribed to, as well as occasional CoLab Talk newsletters.

To change how often you receive site activity notifications, please follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your Climate 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 occasional CoLab Talk newsletters, please click here.

Do you have a privacy policy?

Yes, please see the latest version of our privacy policy here

Can I message people on the Climate CoLab?

Yes, you can send messages to other members via the CoLab messaging system.  Open the recipient member's profile page and select "Send message".  They will receive a notification on the site and, if they have selected this option, an email notification of your message.  Members can send a maximum of 15 messages per 24 hour period.  

Do you have a policy or guidelines on community etiquette on the Climate CoLab?

Yes, please see our Community Philosophy and Policy.


Proposals & Contests

How can I submit a proposal?

Register on the site (or log in if you have already registered). Go to the contest page Select the contest that is most appropriate for your idea and click on it. Click the "Create proposal" button in lower right corner. Fill out the fields in the template.

What is the difference between a Contest and a Workspace?

Activities on Climate CoLab are divided into contests and workspaces. Workspaces are open spaces where people can work on proposals between main contest cycles. Workspaces contain one phase which is open indefinitely. Contests contain several phases, including evaluations, as outlined below. Proposals entered into active contests will be evaluated by expert judges following the deadline, and are eligible for awards.

How can I move a proposal from the Proposal Workspace?

As the proposal owner, you can move your proposal from the Proposal Workspace to an open contest by following these steps:

  1. Log in and open your proposal
  2. Select the Admin tab (on the far right>
  3. Click on "Move proposal" in the lower left part of the screen
  4. Follow the prompts

How do I delete my proposal?

Under the Admin tab on your proposal page, click the delete button

How can I save a draft of my proposal?

Unfortunately, it is only possible to save and publish your proposal at the same time, but you can always go back and edit your proposal after it is published.

Can I edit my proposal after submission?

You can always edit your proposal by logging into your account and clicking edit.

How can I join a team? How can I add people to my proposal?

Some proposals can be edited by anyone on the Climate CoLab, but others are only open to team members. To join a proposal team, you should first log in.  Then go to the "Contributors" tab of the proposal you would like to join and click the "Request membership" button in the upper right.  The Climate CoLab systems will send your membership request to the proposal owner.  After the proposal owner approves the request, your username will show up as a team member in the proposal's Contributors tab and you will have the privileges of a team member - the ability to contribute to the proposal by editing the proposal description.

Can I enter more than one contest?

Yes, you can enter as many contests as you like.

Who can submit a proposal?

The contest is open to anyone in the world, regardless of age, nationality, or political viewpoint.  This contest, however, is void where prohibited by law. It is your responsibility to check with your local laws to make sure that this contest does not violate any applicable law or ordinance, and to make sure that you are eligible to participate. If you are under 18 years old, you will need your parent or legal guardian to register on the Climate CoLab website and submit your proposal for you.  You may submit projects that you have previously published or exhibited so long as they conform to the entry guidelines and the rules of this contest.

What is the format for a proposal?

When you start a proposal, the layout will be provided. Many of the questions are consistent throughout, but some contests may have slightly different questions.  Click "CREATE proposal" on the contest homepage to review the proposal format for that contest.

Do we translate proposals?

Currently we do not have the capacity to translate proposals, as there is a constant input of new content. However, we recommend using a trusted translation website to assist you. 

What are the copyrights on this proposal?

Everything posted is subject to our Creative Commons License, which is at the bottom of each website page.

How can I make sure my proposal is entered in the contest?

Once you click "PUBLISH proposal", it will automatically appear on the contest homepage and considered entered into the contest.

What is the difference between a project and a practice?

Starting in 2017, authors are asked to specify if their proposal is for a project or a practice.

  • A practice suggests actions that could be taken, but not the specific people or organizations who will take them. (For example, a proposal for how solar energy could be installed in developing countries using a franchise business model.) If the practice has already been implemented with very good results in one (or, preferably, many) places, it could be called a best practice.
  • A project suggests actions that could be taken and the specific people or organizations who will take them. (For example, a proposal that outlines how CompanyX will work with the Indian government to launch solar energy franchises.)


Integrated Proposals

Can I participate in a contest and integrate proposals?

Yes, you can create a regional plan that incorporates sector plans from the sector workspaces. They can be your sector plans or other members'. You can review and create sector plans by looking at the workspaces, which can be found on the regional plan contest page. You will also be able to work alongside other members to streamline their sector plans, so it fits your vision for your regional plan. In addition to this, you can also create a new sector plan that utilizes ideas that have not been introduced to the CoLab community, as long as you credit the original author and link them in your sector plan.

Who gets to decide what proposals are going to be integrated?

You can decide! However, you will be asked to justify your choices in your regional plan. You will need to be able to describe why these sector plans fit together and what the possible benefits, costs and challenges might be.


Prizes, Voting, & Judging

What are the prizes and how are the awards decided?

Please see each contest's "Details" Page for information about awards and monetary or non-monetary prizes, if available.

What criteria are used to evaluate proposals? 

Please see a contest's background materials found on its "Details Page" to learn more about specific evaluation criteria. On the contest description on the contest homepage, click "read more" or "Details."

How can I view judges' comments on my proposal?

If available, comments from Judges can be viewed on your proposals' "evaluation results" tab. 

I saw the vote count go down for a proposal. What's going on?

To prevent abuse during the voting period, we require a valid email address in order to count a member's vote.  Any votes made by accounts with invalid email addresses are removed on a regular basis or at the end of the contest. Please see the contest's voting rules for further details.


Technical Questions

How can I include images in my proposal?

If you would like to include images in your proposal, you will first need to upload them on a public image hosting site (such as ImageShack, Flickr, or imgur) and then copy and paste the URL of the image into the "URL" field when you click "Insert Image".  Follow these steps, using the image hosting site imgur as an example: Go to, click on 'Computer' just under 'Upload Images' on the right hand side, select your image, click on 'start upload' and your image should show up on the site.  On the right hand side of the screen displaying your image, you can see a little table. Go to 'Direct Link [..]' and copy the link you find in there to your clipboard. (looks like: )  Go to your proposal on the Climate CoLab into the text field you would like to insert the image to. Click on the text field as if you would want to write something in it. A few buttons should show up just below the upper border of the text field; select 'Image' which is located to the very right.  Paste the link to your imgur image into the URL field and hit 'OK'. To adjust size of your images please use Width and Height fields in image edit dialog box.