Research: the conditions for a partial reopening

Céline Stoffel, laboratory technician, Faculty of Biology and Medicine, Department of Ecology and Evolution (F. Ducrest © UNIL).

April 27, 2020

A note from the Rectorate details the conditions under which researchers will be able to resume their activities. It also recalls or specifies, as relevant, the provisions that apply to staff and apprentices, master’s students as well as to events, thesis defences and professional travel.

The Federal Council’s announcement of a relaxation of confinement measures from 27 April, now makes it possible to relaunch research activities requiring a physical presence on campus in stages and with full respect for health measures and personal situations. Review of the main measures decided by the Management in its note of 24 April 2020.

The complete document can be downloaded in PDF format here :

Geographic scope

The provisions laid down by the Rectorate apply to the buildings on the Dorigny campus as well as to the Bramois site in Valais. At Bugnon and Epalinges, all employees, including those of UNIL, are subject to the guidelines of the CHUV.

Implementation in the Faculties

The planning for the resumption of activities is carried out at the level of each faculty by the research coordinators designated by their deanate.

The research coordinators will approach the research groups directly to prepare the restart. They will have to provide a weekly schedule to the UniSEP crisis unit. They will also communicate to the researchers the modalities concerning the field research activities taking place in Switzerland.

Procedure for the researchers

The personal authorization for staff called to work on the UNIL campus, produced by the Rectorate, must be completed and signed by the employee, endorsed by the dean and returned to the Human Resources Department.

This procedure is the responsibility of the research coordinators designated by the deans.

Persons authorized to visit the campus will be required to continue to comply with the rules in force since mid-March and to inform UniSEP of their presence upon arrival: – Infrastructure and access to the campus

Preventive measures in laboratories

Social distance must be respected.

Apart from laboratory conditions which justify it at all times, there is no recommendation to wear a mask, in accordance with the instructions of the Federal Office of Public Health.

However, UNIL will provide masks to employees who wish to wear them.

Disinfection points are installed at the main entrances to the buildings.

Campus services

  • Catering: a catering service will be available, with a limited offer and upon prior notice only. The Campus Card will be the only means of payment accepted.
  • Libraries: the BCUL will remain closed until 8 June, both at the Unithèque and at the Internef. A delivery service will allow the ordering of physical books for researchers only. Researchers will be informed by e-mail of the terms and conditions.

Thesis defences

Thesis defences can only take place by videoconference. UNIL’s premises do not host any thesis defence, even private.

Thesis work

Until further notice, the closure of the campus applies to Master’s students preparing their thesis work.

Other measures

  • At-risk individuals are not affected by this on-campus reopening plan, nor are those who live with at-risk individuals. They should continue to telework whenever possible.
  • Administrative activities continue at a distance and will be subject of a specific communication according to the measures decided by the authorities.
  • The campus is not open to students or apprentices.
  • Professional trips abroad remain forbidden for UNIL employees.
  • Events organised on or off campus by or in collaboration the UNIL are suspended until 31 August at least.

Preparation of the campus facilities

In order to make the partial reopening of the laboratories possible, UniSEP and Unibat have carried out the following work:

  • re-commissioning of the technical infrastructure that had been slowed down in order to save energy and protect unused facilities;
  • revision of the principles of use of certain scientific platforms in order to guarantee the rules of separation (alternating teams, restocking of stocks of personal protective equipment);
  • cleaning of common areas and disinfection of all door handles;
  • installation of hand disinfection systems;
  • installation of specific signage.


Downloadable documents: