COVID-19: Curtailing research activities on UBC campuses



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    UBC Response to COVID-19 |   New UBC COVID-19 Research Website

In response to COVID-19, the university curtailed on-campus research, scholarship and creative activities on its Vancouver and Okanagan campuses on March 24. The research community was directed to work remotely. 

We appreciate that many researchers have been able to transition to conduct their research and scholarship remotely. However, we are aware that this curtailment significantly impacted many faculty members, graduate students, research trainees, postdoctoral fellows and research staff.

We are now working with our Faculties in planning for the phased resumption of on-campus research, adopting a gradual approach over the summer months. Read more about this.

Each Faculty is responsible for the development of a phase 1 resumption plan and for implementing and enacting these plans once they have been approved. Individual researchers should consult with their own Faculty regarding the status of their relevant on-campus research resumption plan.

The health and wellbeing of our university community remains our priority, and we continue to follow provincial guidance to support limiting the spread of COVID-19. It is important to recognize that the unpredictability of the COVID-19 outbreak may necessitate a return to stricter curtailment of on-campus research and scholarly activities at any point.

Until Faculty research resumption phase 1 plans are approved and implemented, the following guidance regarding curtailment still applies. Once implemented, all on-campus research activity for a Faculty will be governed by the relevant Faculty plan

UBC priorities with respect to research are to:

  • Ensure the health and safety of our local and broader community
  • Maintain the welfare of research animals
  • Ensure the sustainability and safety of critical research resources, data and reagents that are difficult to replace
  • Assist researchers in maintaining or obtaining research funding to cover staff salaries and other priorities

Summary of town hall consultations (posted May 5)

Summary of COVID-19 research working groups (posted May 5)

research Curtailment FAQs

The FAQs below prioritize health and safety, first and foremost.  They are intended to facilitate the curtailment of most on-campus research activity and the continuing operation of some critical on-campus research activity.   

Last update: June 5, 4:20pm
(* indicates latest updates) 

Who does this directive apply to?
What research can continue on campus?
How do I apply for a curtailment exemption?
What is the deadline to submit an exemption form?*
Can I work on research projects from home?
Can I still access my research lab or facility?

Information about support, resources and funding opportunities for COVID-19 research can now be found in the Funding & Resources section of the UBC COVID-19 research website. This includes funding opportunities, ethics and animal care committee approval processes, high-performance computing resources and links to provincial, national and international resources, platforms and networks.

REsearch Support
Are units in the VPRI portfolio still offering support to researchers during on-campus research curtailment?
Research Supplies 
How will UBC deal with limited research supplies (e.g., PPE)?*
Can I still receive international shipments of research materials and supplies?
Off-campus Fieldwork
What should I do if my research involves off-campus fieldwork?*
Research with Human Participants
Can I continue clinical research involving human participants?
Can I continue behavioural research involving human participants?
Working with Animals
How are Animal Care Services facilities impacted?*
Plant Care
What should I do if my research uses Plant Care Services?*
Remote Access to research data & SOftware
How can I securely store and access my data so that I can continue my research remotely?
Is additional software available for me to access remotely?
Guidance for curtailing research activity in your laboratory or research space
How can I minimize the impact on my research program or lab, and the associated academic progress of my graduate students and postdoctoral fellows?
Research Funding
Are funding application dates changing?
Eligible expenses
Submitting my Research Project Information Form (RPIF)?
New funding opportunities for COVID-19 research
Who should I contact if I have questions about support for my research?