As you know, UCI research activities transitioned to Phase 2 on June 8, 2020 as a first step in gradual and careful increase of on-campus research.
We have a deep appreciation of the fact that library resources are essential for conducting research. We write today to share information on the current situation and future plans for libraries.
As of today, the physical library buildings are closed. However, we are still providing many useful services. You can find detailed information on these services at: https://www.lib.uci.edu/uci-library-services-available-covid-19-response
While the above services are meeting some of your needs, we know that these are not sufficient. At this time, we are working through a number of complex issues around how to provide access to the Libraries’ physical collections while protecting the safety of both library staff and visitors. Unlike individual labs, which serve a relatively small and controlled population of researchers, the Libraries serve the entire campus and thus have a much greater potential to become a “hotspot” for the spread of COVID-19. We are working hard on how to mitigate this risk in alignment with state, county, and campus guidelines, but we do not have a timeline yet for reopening.
The campus is currently developing safety and health protocols that will enable staff to work on-site. For the safety of employees who will be serving on the front-lines, as well as the safety of the campus community, we ask for your patience and consideration of the detailed planning that needs to take place before we can provide more access to physical library collections.
We do not have a timeline yet, but when we do we will post our plans here as soon as they can be shared: https://www.lib.uci.edu/uci-libraries-phased-reopening-plans.
Pramod P. Khargonekar
Vice Chancellor for Research