The SMART IRB Joinder System (the “System”), accessible at https://joinder.smartirb.org/ is a web-based software tool designed to facilitate an electronic process to bind an institution as a signatory to the SMART IRB Joinder agreement by enabling institution representatives to enter the information needed to register an institution, download a pre-populated Joinder, and upload a signed Joinder. All use of the System is limited to authorized and authenticated users.
The System has been developed and is operated by a collaboration of Harvard Catalyst, Dartmouth Synergy, and University of Wisconsin ICTR, and funded by the NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) through grant number 3UL1TR002541-01S1 (this collaboration is referred to hereinafter as “SMART IRB”).
The SMART IRB Joinder System is available to institutional representatives, authorized third parties and SMART IRB staff.
Operations, Reporting and Quality Control
Information from the System may be used by authorized users for institutional internal reporting and research grant administration. Such information may also be used by SMART IRB for technical enhancements and operational services supporting SMART IRB functionality.
The SMART IRB Joinder System has protections in place to ensure that access to non-public institution information you provide is accessible only to representatives from your institution and SMART IRB staff.
Some information provided by your institution, including your FWA or IORG number, the location of your institution, your website, whether your institution has an IRB and the Point of Contacts’ contact information, is posted publicly to the SMART IRB website. Information posted will be limited to that which is required by other institutions who are interested in using SMART IRB or who are already participating in SMART IRB. Information such as your quality assessment would not be shared.
Other information, such as your institution’s FWA or IORG number and whether an institution has an IRB, is used within the Online Reliance System to ensure institutions are playing appropriate roles within a reliance arrangement.
As a registered user, you are eligible for free newsletters and announcements of new resources or news about SMART IRB. You agree to receive notifications by email. In addition, any Point of Contact listed in the Joinder submission will receive notifications by email.
Upon registration, you will develop a username and password. You are solely responsible for maintaining the confidentiality of your password and for all activities that occur under your username and password. You agree to prohibit anyone else from using your username and password and will immediately notify SMART IRB (contact information below) and the appropriate person at your institution of any unauthorized use of your username and password or other security concerns of which you become aware.
Third Party Sites
Although SMART IRB may include links providing direct access to third party internet sites as a convenience, the inclusion of a link does not imply endorsement of the linked site. SMART IRB takes no responsibility for the content or information contained in those sites.
Third Party Vendors (including software cloud service providers)
SMART IRB may share information with third party vendors, including cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services, as may be necessary to provide technical or administrative services that the SMART IRB considers at its sole discretion necessary to effectuate the System.
Operations and Record Retention
SMART IRB reserves complete and sole discretion with respect to the operation of the System and its role as the system of record. SMART IRB or its designee shall have the right to conduct audits of members’ compliance hereunder. SMART IRB may, among other things, suspend, withdraw, or discontinue any functionality or feature of the System. SMART IRB is not responsible for transmission errors, or corruption of data carried over local or interchange telecommunication carriers. SMART IRB is not responsible for loss of data arising from use of the SMART IRB services and SMART IRB may delete information uploaded into the System as it deems necessary.
Limitations on Use
We may ask you to upload information including, but not limited to, the following:
Points of Contact(s) Information, including Notice(s) and Institutional Official
Signed Joinder PDF Document
If you request information or other resources or register on the SMART IRB Joinder System, we may ask for contact information such as your name, email address, mailing address, phone number, position, institutional affiliation, title, or other information. We may also ask you to upload other documents relevant to your institution joining SMART IRB. We use this information to confirm whether your institution is eligible to participate in the SMART IRB reliance network.
When you send email or other communications to us, we may retain the email address and the communications in order to process your inquiries and respond to your requests.
Logging and Metrics Collection for Troubleshooting and Audit
The System logs transactions tied to your username for audit and troubleshooting purposes. For example, we will log dates and times you access the System, when you’ve made changes or revisions and what those changes are. Such logging and auditing helps us to solve problems with the System. Logging and audits will also be used to report aggregate metrics on system usage such as decision wait times and other transactional information (see also “Use of Information” section herein).
When you access the System, our servers automatically record information that your browser provides. This may include, among other data, your Internet Protocol (IP) address, browser type, device identifiers and location, the date and time of your access, web pages visited, and files accessed.
Use of Information
We use the information collected for the following purposes, in addition to those described above: tailoring the SMART IRB Joinder System to user needs and improving our content and service; generating data and reports about usage of the website and its content, supporting the functioning and security of the System; protecting our rights and safety and the rights and safety of others.
We may evaluate System usage, measure response times and generate usage metrics, by collecting statistics about the behavior of users and analyzing user information and demographics, but only to generate aggregate statistical reports and to facilitate institutional reporting and assure quality control. We may use third-party services such as Google Analytics to collect such information. We may display this statistical information publicly or provide it to others. Such reports will not disclose site usage by individual visitors or by IP addresses.
Any third parties who receive user information for these purposes are prohibited from using such information for any other purpose.
We also may provide your personally identifiable information to third parties when we believe that doing so is necessary or appropriate to: satisfy any applicable law, regulation, legal process or governmental request; detect, prevent or otherwise address fraud, or security or technical issues; or protect our rights and safety and the rights and safety of our users or others.
Other Websites and Cookies
This website may contain links to other websites. We are not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such web sites.
The SMART IRB Joinder System and all updates/enhancements and support work are provided “AS IS.” SMART IRB hereby disclaims all representations or warranties of any kind (express, implied or otherwise) regarding the System, updates/enhancements, and support work, including but not limited to, any implied warranties of merchantability, fitness for particular purpose, ownership, and noninfringement. Without limiting the foregoing, SMART IRB does not warrant that the functions contained in the System will meet user requirements, or that the operation of the System will be uninterrupted or error-free, or that all defects in the System will be corrected. SMART IRB has no control over the conditions under which users use the System and does not warrant any results that can be obtained by such use. SMART IRB shall not be liable for any direct or indirect, consequential, punitive, incidental, exemplary or special damages, or lost profits, even if advised of the possibility of such damages.
Use of Names
You may not use the SMART IRB name or logo without express written permission.
SMART IRB may provide notice by e-mail to the e-mail address you provided as “Notices To” during the SMART IRB Joinder process, by a general notice on the SMART IRB website, or by written communication delivered by first class U.S. mail or express courier to your address on record in the SMART IRB account information. You may give notice to SMART IRB by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or via U.S. mail or express courier to SMART IRB, C/O Harvard Medical School, 10 Shattuck St, Boston, MA 02115.
This site has security measures in place to help protect against the loss, misuse and alteration of the posted information. However, no such measures are 100% secure.
Last Updated 8-15-2018