Support for disrupted research contracts and new COVID-19 related projects

Thursday, April 2, 2020

This message was originally sent to researchers by Charmaine Dean, vice-president, research and international.

  • Please contact if you have questions of concerns about your current research contracts in light of COVID-19 disruption
  • The evaluation of requests received for critical, ongoing, on-campus and field research will be concluded shortly
  • Links to sponsored research program updates
  • Seeking to identify experts related to COVID-19 related issues

On March 20, we made the difficult decision to suspend all non-critical lab operations on campus in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

We know that many of you have important research, contracts and/or grants in collaboration with industry partners that may have been interrupted.

If you are a holder of industrial, government, non-profit contracts, or partnership grants, and some of your research activities have been impacted by restrictions due to COVID-19, including the inability to meet contract milestones or timelines, you may require contract extension or renegotiation.

It is important that the any Principal Investigator reach out to the Office of Research to discuss such issues as soon as possible. Please contact us at

We will support negotiations with partners on the amendment of contract timelines, deliverables, or end-dates, or handling of other specific challenges including a discussion of appropriate timing for the sending of invoices to the industry partner.

In addition, if in discussion with your industry partners, you identify new opportunities that could support COVID-19-specific research or other research related to transforming your industry partners’ operations in light of changes that are driven by the current crisis, we will prioritize the process required to enable such new research promptly.

Ongoing, on-campus critical research and safety

The evaluation of requests received for critical, ongoing, on-campus and field research will be concluded shortly.

If you have been approved for continued on-campus research, please ensure that you follow the Waterloo pandemic response protocols as well as guidelines from the Region of Waterloo Public Health and Waterloo Safety Office,including for social distancing, noting that changes occur to these directives as Provincial and Federal guidelines change.

As well, keep in mind those obligations as outlined in the Coronavirus Information: Manager Toolkit: Health and Safety.

Finally, please familiarize yourself with the protocols as outlined in the Waterloo Coronavirus document. This contains important information and is updated regularly.

Sponsored research – Tri-Agencies and CFI

Serious considerations are being given to help support the research enterprise through this time of crisis. Continued updates from the Tri-Agencies are expected.

For information on already approved program changes related to COVID-19, please see:

Identification of experts related to COVID-19

We would like to identify a list of experts that government agencies could refer to for support in making decisions over the coming weeks and months related to COVID-19. We invite you to identify whether you should be included in this list of experts. Areas of expertise may include infectious disease, as well as, policy, law, assessment/metrics, education, and mental health.

If you believe your particular area of expertise has relevance and could be of value in decision making, please email us at with a one-sentence statement on your related work.

 Please send your information by end of day Monday, April 6, 2020.

Thank you for your continued cooperation during this time and thank you to the many who are responding to community needs by repurposing experiments and equipment, donating supplies, or lending expertise.