Dear Research Leaders:
Thank you for all the hard work to facilitate the development and submission of Research & Library Operation Plans (RLOPs) by faculty proposing to restart research activities in labs, studios, and other locations. We know the effort has been intense, and we appreciate all the good will and positive energy that faculty have shown as we developed a process for planning and approval that will document our compliance with the Baker Administration’s self-certification mandate and sector specific requirements
for Reopening Massachusetts.
Research & Engagement (R&E) has released RLOP Reviewer/Approver guidelines to assist stakeholders in using the aggregated RLOP data dashboards and Kuali Build App to evaluate plans and record institutional approvals.
For this first round of plans, we ask that plan reviews, updates and approvals at the departmental level be completed by Friday, June 26 at 5:00 p.m. with the expectation that other approvers will complete their reviews by July 1, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.
R&E has scheduled two Zoom sessions for RLOP approvers to ask any questions or to clarify the aggregated data. These sessions are:
  • Thursday, June 25 from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m
  • Monday, June 29 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Individuals may register for these sessions here
As you review plans, here are a few things to note:
  • Room numbers: You will find that some rooms are listed as “null” or have a “null” estimated capacity. This is because submitters should specify only one room number in the room number box, no other text (i.e, DO NOT say “102a and 102b” or any other notes). Submitters should use a different room entry for a different room number even if they are connected. If you send a plan back to the PI for other reasons, please have them fix this. If you can approve a plan as is, no need to send it back exclusively for this purpose. (R&E has been performing data hygiene on the forms and addressing room number errors where they can be done without impact on schedule or other aspects of the plan.)
  • In some cases, PI’s have assigned themselves and/or their backup to a team, and yet do not actually plan on being in the lab. If this is the case, and if you send this back to the PI, then please advise them: If the PI and/or the backup is NOT planning on being in the lab under an RLOP, submitters may put them on a different team from the researchers who will be in the lab. It is OK to have a team that is not scheduled.
  • If faculty share or overlap in a space with another PI, please ensure their coordination.

Questions can be submitted to
Jen Donais
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research and Engagement
Compliance & Support Services
Phone: 413-545-5896
University of Massachusetts Amherst
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