As of Friday, March 13, the GSD has shifted to online coursework for the remainder of the semester, and faculty should plan on keeping current teaching schedules to prevent course conflicts for students. All university-related international travel and non-essential domestic travel are prohibited. All school-wide events and public programs have been cancelled. Everyone should plan for what these new measures will mean for them in the coming months, to ensure they have what they need to complete the semester successfully.

GSD Resources for Online Teaching

Please check the shared resources here frequently (available to GSD faculty through HarvardKey login) for updated information, guidelines, helpful links, and collaborative sharing on best practices. Watch your inbox for notices about upcoming discussion sessions about teaching remotely and the transition to virtual classrooms with GSD’s unique course offerings.

Updated Information Regarding Sponsored Research

From the Office of the Vice Provost for Research, March 26, 2020

Unprecedented flexibilities are being provided for awardees and applicants. Realizing that information is cumbersome and overwhelming, we have compiled the following relevant resources:

We suggest that you visit appropriate funding institution websites regularly and reach out to contacts within your School who can provide support and help triage questions. The University’s Office of Sponsored Programs, the HMS Office of Research Administration, and the SPH Office of Research Administration are also posting relevant information on our websites.

For specific questions regarding GSD research projects, contact Anne Mathew

Access to buildings

As of March 16, the GSD will close access entirely to our academic facilities, including the Fabrication Lab and Loeb Library, for a full 2.5 weeks (until April 2), at which point we will reassess the situation. Faculty are now required to work remotely, away from GSD campus buildings. Over this time, the school will be monitoring this situation as it unfolds, and faculty will be notified if the school’s or the university’s position changes.

Because access to Gund Hall will not be allowed, faculty will continue to have access only to the Loeb Library’s digital collections online. As of Monday, March 16, the Virtual Help Desk also will be available 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Mondays through Fridays to consult on IT-related issues.

Virtual Help Desk

As of March 16, CRG staff are offering a Virtual Help Desk through Zoom. Connect live 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Mondays through Fridays for help resolving IT-related issues.

Where to seek support and assistance through the transition

All academic affairs staff will be available by email, and faculty should contact their respective department staff as they normally would for questions or assistance. Academic affairs staff will utilize online resources to ensure that business operations continue as needed. For financial matters, such as course budgets, student payroll, invoices, and corporate card assistance, please contact the Academic Affairs Business Office. All faculty with general or urgent issues or requests related to academic business and administration should contact Ashley Lang or Estefi Ibanez. For questions regarding individual faculty matters such as visas, appointments, leaves, contracts, reviews, benefits, or other information and resources, the Faculty Affairs Office will continue to respond as usual and can connect with faculty via email, phone, or Zoom.

Events and public programs

All school-wide events and public programs for the spring semester are cancelled. We strongly discourage any events organized by individual departments, administrative offices, student groups, or other individuals or outside groups. All events in GSD buildings are prohibited until further notice.

Frances Loeb Library hours and resources

As of Monday, March 16, the Frances Loeb Library will be closed to in-person visits, but the library will continue to provide the following resources online: access to electronic collections, research and teaching support, and Academic Writing Services (by appointment). The library will continue meeting regularly with individuals and classes using Zoom, and are available to consult on specific needs or requests by contacting Jessica Armstrong (Access Services), Michelle Baildon (Collections), Bruce Boucek (GIS and Data), or Sarah Dickinson (Research and Teaching).

For questions related to library resources and services, including research consultations see the following:

As of March 17: If you have materials checked out:

Returns: Hold on to everything you have. This includes books, Borrow Direct and Interlibrary Loan materials, DVDs, periodicals, etc. There’s no way to return anything right now.
Fines: All recall fines that accrue while the Library is closed will be waived. Reach out to us if you see fines on your account.
Due dates: All due dates can be extended. Nothing should be due in the immediate future. Reach out to us if you need help extending a due date.
Graduating seniors: We are working on solutions specifically for you, but hold on to loans for now.

If you need materials:

Electronic materials: You may submit Scan & Deliver requests for book chapters and journal articles, and we will try to fill as many requests electronically as possible.

  • Scan & Deliver requests may be placed through HOLLIS. If the item you're interested in is eligible, the Scan & Deliver link will appear in the item record.
  • You may also submit a Scan & Deliver request manually via your Scan & Deliver account.


Physical materials
: The borrowing of print materials has been suspended until further notice. Physical items are no longer requestable in HOLLIS.

Travel policies and campus restrictions

All university-related international travel is prohibited. All personal international travel is strongly discouraged. All university-related non-essential domestic air travel is prohibited. We strongly urge extreme caution and judgment for your personal domestic travel. Anyone who returns or arrives to campus from a location with a CDC level 3 travel warning for COVID-19, must complete this confidential health form at least 48 hours before your return/arrival to campus and self-isolate using guidance from Harvard University Health Services. Most self-isolations will last 14 days.

University-related emergencies

Contact the 24/7 Operations Center at 617-495-5560. Building Services will be monitoring the email address  buildingservices@gsd.harvard.edu. A full list of Emergency Contacts for the GSD Community can be found in the Resource Center under Emergencies.

Back-up Care

As you manage work and whatever caregiving responsibilities you may have — whether for young children, elders, other adults, and even yourself — you are probably making complex calculations about safety. If you feel it is right for you and your family, and you choose to hire an in-home caregiver beyond your own personal network, you may want to look at Harvard’s WATCH portal, which is a Harvard-only site listing Harvard parents and Harvard caregivers. Subsidized in-home back-up care through Care@Work is also available, although their pool of caregivers is under high demand. As you decide, please read about what Care@Work offers and how they are approaching safety in the context of coronavirus. And remember: pre-registration is required to use any of their programs.

The SOURCE program is a separate, small subsidy available to employees earning under $75K FTE to help reimburse back-up care expenses (for a child or adult dependents) and for self care. The process is straightforward: you pay someone from your personal network or any of the resources described above. Then you and they complete the pdf claim form and send it to the Office of Work/Life. No printer at home? No problem; just use a digital signature on the pdf.

Frequently Asked Questions

I am an international faculty member or non-faculty academic employee (post doc, research associate, etc.). Will the GSD still help me arrange my visa?

Yes. Faculty Affairs will continue working individually with international faculty and with Harvard International Office on visas.

Can I still submit a sponsored research grant proposal?

Research Administration services will continue. Please contact Anne Mathew if you plan to submit a sponsored research grant proposal prior to May 1, 2020. Completed proposals must be submitted at least one month in advance of the sponsor's due date to provide adequate time for GSD internal and university-level review and approvals. For more information, contact Research Administration staff.

What will happen for summer research jobs and other GSD summer programs? Can faculty members still hire students or graduates for summer work?

Faculty Affairs will continue to review and provide support for hiring academic researchers for faculty sponsored projects and research initiatives. Please keep in mind that 60-90 days lead time is needed to complete an academic hire if a visa is required, and at least 30 days for all other hires.

Do I need to self-isolate for COVID-19?

HUHS has put together a one-pager of potential scenarios based on the best scientific advice currently available (updated March 16, 2020).

This page will be updated as new information becomes available. Last updated March 27, 2020 3:37 pm EDT.