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VP for Research Issues Update Regarding Research Programs

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Rich Reeder, Vice President for Research, has issued a message on research activities to the Stony Brook Research community. The message reads as follows:

The necessary actions taken by Stony Brook University to address the threats posed by COVID-19 have been enormously disruptive for the entire campus. As researchers, you are experiencing the impacts of research lab shutdowns and curtailment of non-essential research activities in accordance with my March 20th guidance. The transition to working at home has required that many of you, including your grad students, postdocs and research staff, refocus your activities, resulting in delays and interruptions of research programs. For most PIs, this also includes the challenges of managing expenditures from grants and contracts at a time when progress toward associated aims and tasks have been slowed or paused.

Coronavirus UpdateI want to remind you that the federal funding agencies have provided their own guidance to PIs in response to the disruptions caused by COVID-19. The goal of that guidance is to provide significant administrative relief for sponsored research activities as directed by OMB (M-20-17). This includes practices related to late proposal submissions, reimbursement of canceled trips due to COVID-19, payment of graduate students from grants who are unable to report to work, award extensions, and impact on human subjects research. The individual federal agencies are implementing these flexibilities differently, and continue to provide guidance and updates as they revise their procedures. The most current guidance and updates from sponsors are posted on OVPR’s COVID-19 Website. Please be sure to check this page regularly since new information is appearing daily.

I also want to confirm that the OVPR is doing everything possible to provide services to our researchers during normal business hours. OVPR staff are working remotely and reachable via email or phone. Some of our services require close coordination with other units on campus, most of which are also adjusting to remote work conditions. As some interruptions may occur, I would like to share our communication strategy:

  • A complete list of our staff contact information can be found here. If you have trouble reaching someone for any reason, note the unit level contact information here. Email is the best mode of communication; however, our staff are ready and willing to set-up telephone appointments and virtual meetings.
  • As mentioned above, the most current internal guidance and updates from sponsors are being posted on OVPR’s COVID-19 Website. Please be sure to check this page regularly.  Another good resource repository of COVID-19 related updates that we monitor regularly is the COGR (Council on Governmental Relations).
  • Individual units (OSP, OGM, ORC, OTLIR, OPD) may release communication specific to the updates and procedures for their areas.
  • OVPR will send broad communications when needed to the faculty and staff via the campus blast system.
  • We are curating a list of COVID-19 funding opportunities, found here.

If you have a research-related question and are unsure who to contact, please send an email to ovpr_communications@stonybrook.edu. This is a rapidly changing landscape. We will do our best to keep you informed. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding during these unprecedented times.

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