You are here

RESEARCH UPDATES: Response to Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 Challenges

Published April 2, 2020

csulb logo




DATE:             March 23, 2020


TO:                  Faculty, Staff and Student Researchers


FROM:            Simon Kim, Ph.D.

AVP for Research & Sponsored Programs


SUBJECT:     Response to Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 Challenges


As we continue to take measures to protect the health and well-being of everyone in our campus community, we are providing the following guidance to ensure that research activities continue with the implementation of appropriate modifications that limit human interaction through social distancing.


Effective immediately, each PI or Director/Coordinator of a laboratory, art studio and/or research program must prepare and implement a strategy to limit human interactions and enhance social distancing for all campus research activities.


In your strategy, anticipate how your program or project will practice social distancing and limit human interaction. When creating your strategy, please plan on contacting your respective program officers to seek guidance and prior approval to any major scope of work modifications, changes in key personnel effort, or major budget adjustments that may take place.


Additionally, where possible identify essential research personnel, essential experiments, and essential sponsored activities that will need to continue.  Please also consider that, essential research personnel are those individuals who are:

  1. Necessary to ensure the ongoing viability of research, including the well-being of research animals. This includes the HSCI vivarium and Marine Lab staff responsible for animal care.
  1. The faculty and/or research staff who are necessary to ensure the ongoing viability of research that includes not easily replaceable perishable research materials.
  1. Responsible for maintenance of equipment that, if not done, could result in damage to equipment or extraordinary cost.


Note that students are not mandated to serve as essential personnel. The decision to report to campus lies with the student worker, not the PI.


Essential experiments are those for which suspension of activities would cause irreparable harm to the research project. In all cases of essential experiments please be sure to properly address limiting human interactions and enhancing social distancing.


In addition, it is likely that human subjects research will be impacted. Please read the memo regarding CSULB IRB Response to COVID-19.  If you have any questions or concerns, please email to, or call IRB Office 562.985.2472 for more information.


We also actively encourage staff and students to work from home whenever feasible. Encourage that all staff, students, and researchers maintain a safe space of six feet or more from each other and practice good hygiene. Please be sure that if anyone is sick, including essential personnel, they do not come to work. It is also important to remember that under NO circumstances are researchers to take materials, other than laptops and data storage devices, off site, including to their homes.


The ORSP Compliance Office remains open but will be telecommuting until further notice. For IRB related inquiries, please email: For IACUC related inquiries, please email: If possible, specify the IRB or IACUC protocol number and/or PI’s name in the email subject line.  For general inquiries about research compliance please email: If possible, specify your question in the email subject line.



C:        College Deans

            University Research Advisory Committee