The University of Windsor is preparing for a safe return to campus. Learn More.

FAQs

Research that is conducted online, does not require the research to be conducted on campus, and does not require any travel by the research team or the research participants can continue.

Research which requires travel to campus or another site (even if only one person is travelling) must not continue unless it meets the following criteria:

  • It is “Essential” research undertaken to ensure the safety and protection of research infrastructure, including ongoing regular care, feeding, conditioning, or inspections (e.g. maintenance of cells, animals, breeding colonies, or tissues) and/or the inspection and maintenance of sensitive equipment to ensure the continuity of a research program; and/or
  • It is “Critical” research that has been assessed and determined to be critical by the Department Head and Dean, evaluated by the Research Safety Committee, approved by the Dean, and formally authorized by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation.

Further details on essential and critical research and the process established by the University for the resumption of research can be found in the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research. Information is also available on the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance page on the OVPRI website under the heading Framework and Process for the Resumption of Research. Forms and information on the application process can be found under the heading Resumption of Research Application Process and Forms.

Yes, you can start a new research project. However, unless you have applied to resume your research, and it has been determined to meet the criteria to be designated as “Critical” by your Department Head and Dean, assessed and recommended for resumption by the Research Safety Committee, approved by the Dean, and authorized by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation, you may not proceed immediately.  The only exception is for research can be conducted online, does not require the research to be conducted on campus, and does not require any travel by the research team or the research participants.

Further information on the criteria used to determine the criticality of research and the process for apply to resume research activities can be found in the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research. Information is also available on the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance page on the OVPRI website under the heading Framework and Process for the Resumption of Research. Forms and information on the application process can be found under the heading Resumption of Research Application Process and Forms.

“Essential” research is research that is undertaken to ensure safety and protection of research infrastructure, including:

  • On-going regular care, feeding, conditioning, or inspections (e.g. maintenance of cells, animals, breeding colonies, or tissues) to ensure the continuity of a research program; and/or
  • Inspection and maintenance of sensitive equipment to ensure the continuity of a research program.

Essential research is the only research permitted during Phase 0 – Essential Services Only stage of the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research. “Essential” research activities will be permitted through all four phases for the framework.  Essential research is determined to be so by Department Head and Dean and authorized by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation.

Further details on essential research can be found in the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research. Information is also available on the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance page on the OVPRI website under the heading Framework and Process for the Resumption of Research.

“Critical” research is research that has been assessed and determined to be critical by the Department Head and Dean, evaluated by the Research Safety Committee, approved by the Dean, and formally authorized by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation.

Department Heads and Deans use the Critical Research Assessment Tool to evaluate the criticality of research based on urgency and time-sensitiveness, impact of research on collaborators, funding agency timelines and deliverables, impact on physical and economic health of the community, and the contribution of the research to student training. These factors are balanced against additional risks related to implementing the proposed research, including the number of personnel required to meet project needs; their ability to maintain physical distancing given resource constraints of laboratory space or field work activities; availability of requested space and resources given on-going activities of approved research; the need for internal and external essential services required for delivery of consumables and supplies, maintenance and calibration of equipment, and emergency response; access to public space for off-campus field work; and any other concerns identified Department Head and Dean.

Categories of critical research may include:

  • Research related to SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 that cannot be undertaken remotely;
  • Research in which delay and resumption will have direct impacts on the ability of the community to provide essential services, including health services, to the public;
  • Long-running research/field research in which a serious loss of research material, data, or equipment could occur if the work is disrupted, is at a critical stage, or close to an end point;
  • Research required to meet a contract deadline with an industrial or government partner that cannot be renegotiated, where failure to complete the research would irrevocably harm the relationship with that partner; and/or
  • Research that, if paused, would negatively impact the ability of a graduate student to complete program requirements within the next three months and requires minimal on-site work time to complete.

If you feel that your research project meets the aforementioned criteria and would like to apply to have your research project designated as critical so that you can resume your research activities, complete and submit the following application form to your Department Head for consideration:

pplication for Critical and/or Time-Sensitive Research Designation with Research Considerations Appendix

All application forms must also be accompanied by the following Risk Acknowledgement forms for the Principal Investigator and all students and research personnel participating in the project:

Risk Acknowledgement: Principal Investigator

Risk Acknowledgement: Student and/or Research Personnel

If you would ike to make changes to a project previously approved and authorized to resume, complete and submit the following form to your Department Head:

Request to Revise Application for Critical and/or Time-Sensitive Research

If your Faculty has been authorized to move to Phase 3 of the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research and you would like to apply to have your lab approved and authorized to resume research activities in Phase 3, please complete and submit the following application to your Department Head for consideration:

Phase 3 COVID-19 Research Resumption Plan

Please note that you can only use the Phase 3 COVID-19 Research Resumption Plan application if your Faculty has moved to Phase 3; otherwise, please use the application forms for Phases 1 and 2.

Applications for projects determined by the Department Head to meet the criteria for designation as critical research will be forwarded to the Dean for consideration. Once also assessed as critical by the Dean, applications will be forwarded to the Research Safety Committee for evaluation. If the Research Safety Committee recommends your project for resumption, it will then be forwarded for approval by the Dean and then authorization by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation (see flow chart).

Please note that in addition to essential research (see What is “Essential” research?), only critical research that has been fully assessed, approved by the Dean, and authorized by the Vice-President, Research and Innovation will be permitted to resume during Phases 1-3 of the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research.

Further details on critical research and the process established by the University for the resumption of research can be found in the UWindsor Framework for the Resumption of Research. Information is also available on the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance page on the OVPRI website under the heading Framework and Process for the Resumption of Research. Forms and information on the application process can be found under the heading Resumption of Research Application Process and Forms.

The Flow and Zone analysis will be coordinated by the Dean’s office in each Faculty and will assess the safe, and physically distanced, flow of traffic and the relevant zones that can accommodate personnel returning to campus. The Flow and Zone analysis is to be undertaken to assist in determining the maximum capacity that can be safely accommodated in a phased in resumption of campus activities.

There are a growing number of funding opportunities to support COVID-19 research available. ORIS will continue to broadcast these opportunities to faculty as they arise.

In addition, information on Funding Opportunities for COVID-19 Research can be found on the VPRI website. You can also find information on funding opportunities by visiting the WE-Spark Health Institute COVID-19 Resources website.

If you are interested in applying for COVID-19 research funding, please contact Ingrid Qemo at iqemo@uwindsor.ca.

In addition to COVID-19 calls, many funding agencies are continuing to run existing grant competitions as usual. However, in some cases, funding agencies have adjusted their standard grant application deadlines and processes.

For information and updates on Tri-Council grant competitions, visit the CIHR, NSERC, or SSHRC COVID-19 websites. Information and updates provided by other funding agencies is available on the Funding Agency Information and Updates page on the VPRI website.

In addition, ORIS will circulate important information and updates on grant competitions to faculty as they are received, and include them in the ORIS newsletter, Plugging into Research, to keep you up to date about upcoming deadlines.

If you have specific questions about applying for funding or changes to funding programs, please contact the relevant ORIS staff member (see Who should I contact to answer specific questions about my research funding? below).

The ORIS form that is required for each grant application can be completed and circulated for authorization, and signed digitally by the PI, AAU Head, Dean, and Executive Director of ORIS via email.

Once the ORIS form has been fully authorized, PIs should send the form and grant application to the relevant ORIS staff member (see Who should I contact to answer specific questions about my research funding? below) electronically and work with them to submit grant application as per funding agency specifications.

In some cases, it may be possible to request an extension for your Tri-Council grant because of COVID-19. For agency and program-specific information about extensions of Tri-Council grants, please visit the CIHR, NSERC, or SSHRC COVID-19 websites.

If your grant is eligible and you would like to request an extension or would like to discuss your eligibility to apply for an extension, please contact the relevant ORIS Research Coordinator listed below:

ORIS staff are working remotely and will continue to provide their full suite of services electronically. If you have questions about new or existing research funding or initiatives, please contact the relevant ORIS staff member listed below:

  • For information on NSERC and programs related to science and engineering, contact Sara Kenno at sara.kenno@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on institutional programs, including CFI, ORF, ERA, and other special large projects, contact Nicole Noël at nnoel@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on CIHR, NIH, Seeds4Hope and programs related to health, including Covid-19-related initiatives, contact Ingrid Qemo at iqemo@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on SSHRC and programs relating to the arts, social sciences, and humanities, contact Natasha Wiebe at nwiebe@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on CRCs and internal programs, Contact Kate Rosser-Davies at krdavies@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on contracts, agreements, IP, Overhead, OCE, and technology transfer, contact Vesna Kaps at vesna@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on IP and technology transfer, contact Tina Suntres at tina.suntres@uwindsor.ca.

If you are unsure who to contact, email oris@uwindsor.ca and the appropriate staff member will respond.

Yes, you can still hire grant-funded research personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, we ask that supervisors carefully consider and use the upmost discretion when appointing new and/or reappointing existing research personnel during the COVID-19 pandemic, and wherever possible and appropriate; supervisors are asked to holdoff on appointing new and/or reappointing existing research personnel until the pandemic has subsided and physical distancing measures have been lifted.

In the event that supervisors need to move forward with appointing new and/or reappointing existing research personnel, they should ensure that the appointee can work remotely, contributing to research that is conducted online, and does not require travel by the appointee or research participants.

Exceptions will be considered for “Essential” research, including COVID-19-related research. Guidelines for Essential research during the pandemic are available in the the Continuation of Research during the COVID-19 Pandemic section of the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance on the OVPRI website.

The OVPRI and HR are continuing to appoint non-student and student grant-funded research personnel electronically. Requests for Research or Post-Doc Appointment packages and Student Hiring Authorization forms should be circulated for authorization electronically. Email confirmation of authorization will be accepted. Complete appointment packages for non-student research personnel that have been authorized by departmental/faculty one-ups and Research Finance should be submitted electronically to grantappts@uwindsor.ca. Student Hiring Authorization forms should be submitted electronically to hr@uwindsor.ca.

In some cases, it may be necessary to delay, cancel appointments that are currently underway, or rescind research appointments that have been issued but have not yet started.

If you have questions relating to the delay, cancellation, or rescinding of research appointments, please contact Amy Taylor in the OVPRI at Amy.Taylor@uwindsor.ca.

Please contact Tracy McLeod, Human Resources Manager, in the Department of Human Resources at Tracy.McLeod@uwindsor.ca with questions relating to student research appointments.

Yes, ORIS Partnerships and Technology Transfer staff are working remotely and continue to provide their full suite of services electronically. For more information on IP protection and technology transfer, please contact the relevant ORIS Partnerships and Technology Transfer staff member listed below:

  • For information on contracts, agreements, IP, Overhead, OCE, and technology transfer, contact Vesna Kaps at vesna@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on IP and technology transfer, contact Tina Suntres at tina.suntres@uwindsor.ca;
  • For information on invention disclosure, technology evaluation and commercialization, and patent searches, contact Devinder Moudgil at dmoudgil@uwindsor.ca.

If you are unsure who to contact, email tto@uwindsor.ca and the appropriate ORIS Partnerships and Technology Transfer staff member will reach out to you to discuss your technology, provide guidance on the process, and work with you on your technology disclosure form.

Research Finance staff are working remotely and will continue to provide support online. If you have questions about new or existing grant accounts, please contact the relevant Research Finance staff member below:

  • Contact Miguel Pebenito at miguelp@uwindsor.ca if you are from the Faculty of Education; Odette School of Business; Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science; Faculty of Graduate Studies; Schulich School of Medicines & Dentistry; Cross Border Institute; EPICentre; or if your funding is from CFI;
  • Contact Paul Scobie at paul.scobie@uwindsor.ca if you are from the Faculty of Engineering; Faculty of Human Kinetics; Faculty of Law; Faculty of Nursing; Centre for Teaching and Learning; Open Learning; or the Leddy Library; or
  • Contact Phoebe Zheng at phoebe.zheng@uwindsor.ca if you are from the Faculty of Science; Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research; or Institute for Diagnostic Imaging Research.

If you are unsure of who to contact, email resfinance@uwindsor.ca and the appropriate Research Finance staff member will respond to your inquiry.

The University of Windsor implemented its Animal Care Pandemic Plan on March 26, 2020 to ensure that researchers and research animals are being cared for and that the safety of animal care staff, researchers, and students is prioritized.

The following guidelines are currently in effect:

  • Access to all Animal Care Facilities, including those in CACF, the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research (GLIER), and the Freshwater Restoration Ecology Centre (FREC), will be restricted to animal-care staff and approved research staff only;
  • No new animals will be ordered or allowed into the facilities;
  • Male and female animals will be moved to separate cages to curtail breeding;
  • All experimental procedures involving research animals will be prohibited until the Covid-19 crisis has abated;
  • Researchers are being consulted to determine the relative value and priorities of individual animals and strains;
  • Some standard operating procedures may be amended as required at the discretion of the Operation Manager of CACF (or designate); and
  • If it becomes impossible to maintain all animals in the facility during the pandemic, the Operations Manager of CACF (or designate) may require the humane euthanasia of animals beginning with those of the lowest priority.

If you have specific questions regarding the care of your research animals, contact John Hudson, Chair of the Animal Care Committee, at jhudson@uwindsor.ca or Linda Sterling, Central Animal Care Facility Operations Manager, at L.Sterling@uwindsor.ca.

For more information on the Animal Care Pandemic Plan guidelines, visit the Animal Care section of the COVID-19 Research and Innovation Guidance on the OVPRI website.

The University of Windsor REB continues to review all new submissions for ethics review on a weekly basis, and is prioritizing research related to COVID-19 for rapid review.

The REB has suspended the need for submission of paper copies and is accepting all forms with electronic signatures, and will continue to review requests to revise, progress, and final reports, as well as unanticipated and adverse events as they are received. All submissions and communication to the REB should be sent to the ethics mailbox at ethics@uwindsor.ca.

The REB is available to researchers and study participants via email through the ethics mailbox at ethics@uwindsor.ca. You can also leave a voicemail for the Office of Research Ethics at 519-253-3000, extension 3948. Both the ethics email and voicemail are monitored daily by the REB Chair and Office of Research Ethics.

Researchers across our campus offer a wide variety of expertise and are engaged in COVID-19 research. For more information on the COVID-19-related expertise of our researchers, visit the COVID-19 Expertise section of the Fighting COVID-19 in our Community and Region page on the VPRI website.

To connect with a researcher, contact the OVPRI at vpri@uwindsor.ca.

The University of Windsor is committed to fighting COVID-19 through research and innovation, providing expertise, and supporting assessment centres, healthcare facilities, and frontline healthcare workers in our region by donating PPE, medical equipment, and other important supplies to hospitals in our community.

For more information, visit the UWindsor COVID-19 Research in the News and Community Contributions sections of the Fighting COVID-19 in our Community and Region page on the VPRI website.