COVID-19 — Plans for the phased resumption of on-campus research

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In March, UBC introduced curtailment of on-campus research on both our Vancouver and Okanagan campuses. Since that time many of you have made great efforts to support this transition, conducting your research and scholarly activity remotely.

We recognize that the on-campus curtailment has had significant impacts for many of you, your graduate students and your research teams. Thank you once again for your commitment to the university.

In collaboration with our Faculties, we are now planning for the phased resumption of on-campus research from the beginning of June, adopting a gradual approach over the summer months. Conducting on-campus research and scholarship will be limited to those who require on-campus resources and cannot conduct this work remotely. As a reminder, and in keeping with public health guidelines, the majority of our faculty and staff will need to continue working remotely, wherever possible.

As part of our planning, UBC is working with the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training and post-secondary institutions within BC to ensure we are aligned with health and safety guidelines and WorkSafeBC. The phased resumption of on-campus research is also being informed by feedback we received during consultation with Faculties and units, including town halls that engaged more than 950 faculty members.

We have asked the Faculties to develop plans to embark on this phased approach. The plans will be led by Deans and Associate Deans of Research, with coordination and guidance provided by the Office of the VP, Research & Innovation. Given the complexity of coordinating safe access to different spaces within buildings, and managing the associated demand for multiple on-campus services, there is still significant planning to be done.

It is important to stress that health and safety remains our priority. As such, UBC will continue to work closely with the provincial government to ensure our plans are consistent with public health requirements. We also recognize that this will be an iterative process, and we may need to be prepared to reinstate curtailment measures, should the situation regarding COVID-19 change.

For more information, please visit

Santa J. Ono
President and Vice-Chancellor

Gail Murphy
Vice-President, Research & Innovation

This message was sent to faculty and staff in Vancouver and the Okanagan.

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