Ever since we implemented research curtailment and shutdown in late March 2020, we have been working on plans for reversing those steps when we would be allowed to do so. Today, I am writing this message to provide important new information about transitioning UCI research activities to Phase 2.
On May 11, 2020, I provided a framework for UCI Research Activities and California’s Staged Roadmap. The State transitioned to early Stage 2 in the California roadmap on May 8, 2020, and Orange County transitioned to later Stage 2 in the California roadmap on May 23, 2020. We are consulting with Orange County Health Care Agency and are expecting that UCI’s transition to Phase 2 research activities will be effective on June 8, 2020.
Each School or SRP/ORU that has its own building will implement its own process for submitting, reviewing and approving transition plans prepared by faculty members and independent researchers (“Plan Owners”). The Office of Research has provided deans and SRP/ORU directors (“Authorized Officials”) with a plan template to make these processes as efficient as possible. Authorized Officials may collect additional information if needed to further facilitate plan review and approval. Approved transition plans are required before Phase 2 research activities may commence, and Plan Owners should post them or otherwise make them broadly available to their team members or anyone else utilizing the space covered by the plan.
The Office of Research has reorganized the General Points of Consideration to make it easier to develop transition plans. Plan Owners should follow the general steps below:
- Review the Guiding Principles in my May 11, 2020 message
- Review the General Points of Consideration – Planning the Phased Increase of UCI’s On-Site Research Activities
- Conduct an assessment utilizing the Phase 2 Research Assessment form (required)
- Review and complete the Phase 2 Research Activities Checklist
- Use the process established by the applicable Authorized Official(s), prepare your protection plan and submit it for approval.
For researchers who conduct off-site research, please see Guidance for Expanding Off-Site research activities. The Office of Research will soon issue additional guidance regarding other considerations related to expanding research activities. In addition, UCI will issue guidelines on several other topics in the coming days, including face coverings, health screenings, and education and training for working well during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please be sure to follow these forthcoming guidelines.
Please visit the Research Ramp-Up webpage for the most current guidance on all aspects of UCI’s Phase 2 research ramp-up.
UCI is dedicated to helping its community learn more about the SARS-CoV-2 virus, the COVID-19 disease it causes, and how to maintain a healthy lifestyle during this pandemic. You can find this information at these links:
- UCI’s COVID-19 Website
- UCI Health’s COVID-19 Website
- OC Health Care Agency
- Daily metrics about the public health effects of the pandemic in Orange County
- Information about California’s Roadmap
- Information about California’s Stay at Home order
- Information from the CDC about SARS-CoV-2
I know that your research activities have been disrupted by the COVID-19 induced ramp-down. I hope that the transition of your research activities to Phase 2 will be as smooth as possible. I am confident that you will give your own health and that of your staff and students and our community the highest priority during this important transition.
Pramod Khargonekar, Ph.D.
Vice Chancellor for Research
Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science