RAPID: Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on the Biomedical Research Workforce: Productivity and Progress in Academia

Project: Research project

Project Details


The Covid-19 pandemic caused significant disruptions to the biomedical research enterprise as research institutions across the country implemented workplace restrictions following public health guidelines. These restrictions will undoubtedly cause delays in research activity due to the limited or lack of access to research facilities, personnel, and equipment. In addition, scientific meetings and symposia which foster the exchange of knowledge, spark collaboration, and provide opportunities for professional advancement have also been put on pause. While broad projections can be made about the status of the research enterprise, it is unclear how these restrictions and limitations will affect individual scientists across the biomedical research spectrum. The goal of this project is to explore how the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted the biomedical research enterprise by examining the productivity and professional progress of academic scientists. The specific objectives are 1) To assess the perceived impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on academic scientists at multiple timepoints. 2) To determine if the perceived impact of the Covid-19 pandemic differs based on gender, race/ethnicity, family status, career stage, or academic institution type. 3) To identify the structural or systemic factors which influenced individual productivity and progress among a stratified sample of biomedical research scientists. Using a mixed-methodology approach the Co-PIs will develop and administer a cross-sectional quantitative survey and conduct qualitative interviews. Expected outcomes of the survey-study include summary statistics and analysis of demographic information, family status, career stage, and type of academic institution against data on institutional response and support, work-family timing, and other variables. In-depth interviews will further probe respondents’ reactions to the work interruptions posed by COVID-19; experiences with work and family responsibilities; perceptions of universities’ responses to the pandemic; and prospective insights on long term impacts. Together, this work will provide a data-driven perspective on the impact of Covid-19 on academic scientists which can be used to inform decision-making critical to sustaining the biomedical enterprise within the United States.
Effective start/end date9/1/20 → 8/31/23


  • National Science Foundation (SMA-2035112)


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