CAN-ACN survey on impact of COVID-19 on researchers and laboratories in Canada

Survey dates: July 17 – 27, 2020

Survey participant statistics

Total number of participants: 700

What is your career level?

Principal Investigator (PI) responses (Total = 338)

How many years have you been a principal investigator?

Laboratory funding

What are your major funding sources? (indicate all that apply)

Tri-council = 95%
Charitable = 37%
Provincial = 24%
Others = 17%

 

If you receive funding from CIHR, NSERC or SSHRC, please estimate the percentage of this funding is used to pay for salaries for your students, post-docs and staff?

Average = 61%
Median = 65%

What percentage of your lab’s annual budget will you need to spend solely to compensate for losses, restart and recovery of your operations?

Average = 27%
Median = 25%

Do you agree that the government of Canada should include special funds – specifically a one-time 25% increase in tri-council budgets – to help restart research laboratories to help with recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?


COVID-19 associated losses – Details

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused losses and additional costs to my laboratory

 

How many students, post-docs and staff did you employ in your laboratory before the pandemic?

Average = 7
Median = 6

How many Students, Staff members, Post-Doctoral fellows, Clinical fellows or visiting scientists have you lost or expect to lose during the COVID pandemic? (Relocation, leave of absence, loss of funding, etc.)

  • 29% reported loss of 1 or more Paid Staff (Research Associates/Scientists, Research Technicians/Assistants)
  • 24% reported loss of 1 or more Post-Doctoral Fellows
  • 49% reported loss of 1 or more Students

 

Loss of productivity

How many more studies (publications) do you expect your lab would have completed (i.e. paper submitted or resubmitted) if the pandemic had not occurred?

  • 89% of PIs (302) reported the inability to complete and submit findings for publication (On average, this was 2.4 more studies.)

Was any of the funding you expected to receive/applied for during 2020-21 cancelled or delayed? 

  • 42% of PIs (143) reported loss or delay in funding for 2020-21 because of the pandemic.

 

 

Students, Post-Docs and Research Scientist responses (Total = 362)

Have you lost funding or employment due to the pandemic?

Please estimate the amount of funding you lost due to the pandemic

25% of students (89), post-docs and research scientists report some loss of funding

Do you expect delays in completing your degree due to the pandemic?

Has the pandemic affected your productivity?

My productivity has been impacted by the following personal challenges

Dependent care = 24 %
Family/Housing = 36%
Mental wellness = 58%
Financial = 24%
Others = 22 %

 

Do you agree that the government of Canada should include special funds – specifically a one-time 25% increase in tri-council budgets – to help restart research laboratories to help with recovery from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?