COVID-19: INED research activities and information diffusion will continue during the pandemic

26 March 2020

On March 16, as France was preparing to shelter in place in order to contain the spread of COVID-19, INED directors put in place all that was necessary to protect its personnel and ensure the continuation its activities (plan de continuité d’activité or PCA) under the best possible conditions.

Our priority is to protect all our staff …

On Saturday, March 14, INED Director Magda Tomasini addressed a message to all Institute personnel to stay at home on Monday, March 16, the first day of the country’s official confinement policy. Research unit and INED support service heads across the board relayed her message to all their teams. Then on the following Monday morning, March 16, the Institute’s crisis group organized the continuation of Institute activities in accordance with Higher Education and Research Ministry recommendations, adapting conditions to the Institute’s scientific activities. The practice of working from home, already in place at INED since Spring 2019, was extended to other staff members and secure access to IT material, computer programs and other resources provided to ensure that the work goes as smoothly as possible. Any permanent staff members who could not be included in this framework were granted special absence permits upon request.

All INED staff and most of the doctoral students caught by the pandemic while abroad were repatriated in the following days and housing solutions were found for them.

… while ensuring that the priority actions in our PCA go forward …

INED’s PCA (activity continuity plan) was revised and implemented to ensure that priority administrative and technical functions essential to the life of the Institute and its partners will continue in the current situation. Permanent staff members and limited-contract employees will all continue to be paid, as will interns and Institute suppliers; the operations necessitated by the cancelling or postponing of scientific projects, conferences, and seminars will be managed; and all technical infrastructure maintained in good condition. INED is pursuing its activities through teletravail today in an operating framework adapted to the pandemic context. 

However, some activities have had to be suspended, such as researcher recruitment examinations, face-to-face survey data collection, and surveys of health professionals. 

The Institute is also continuing to provide information to journalists. All requests should be sent to service-presse@ined.fr and will be handled within 24 hours, as usual.

… and contributing to research on the impact of COVID-19 on our societies

While the population sciences are not frontline actors in finding an effective treatment against the COVID-19 coronavirus, they are essential to analyzing and understanding the impact this pandemic is having and will have had on populations and how they are organized in France and across the world.

Are COVID-19 mortality rates comparable from country to country? Are men and women exposed in the same way to lethal risk from this virus? Are the measures that have been taken to break contamination chains similar from one country to the next and do they have the same effects everywhere? How is family life being organized during confinement?