PRME Signatories COVID-19 Responses

Regularly Updated

To submit how your institution (PRME Signatory) is responding and adapting to COVID-19, please email

See Also: How Business Schools are responding to COVID-19 - examples from the PRME community

Business School of Beijing Institution of Technology - Zhuhai, China

In response to the COVID-19, the BS department has adopted certain measures in line with the advice and requirement provide by the Ministry of Education and BIT Zhuhai. We established a committee to response the COVID-19. So far, all teaching work has been maintained orderly.

Teaching:

  • Currently teachers and students are all working from home. Diversified online teaching resources have been engaged in online teaching. Zoom and Chaoxing platform have been used in online teaching delivery. Teachers could choose either live streaming or recorded broadcast to deliver the lectures. Some of the Lab class has been replaced by online simulation software.
  • Alternative for the exam included changing exam time or changing exam methods, such as online quiz or essay presentation rather than siting exam.
  • Students' daily Q&A work has also been transferred to the online platform.

Research:

  • Research work was not affected too much. Online communication has been kept among the research staff.

Others:

  • Special mental support has been provider to the teachers and students located in Wuhan. The students from poor family have gotten the special subsidies from the university.
FEA-RP - Brazil

The School of Economics, Business and Accounting at Ribeirão Preto of USP (FEA-RP) launched on the 14th of April, through its PRME Committee the "2020 FEA-RP Sustainability Award: COVID-19". The initiative's goal is to encourage FEA-RP community to mobilize themselves in actions that contribute to reducing the damage of the pandemic in the Ribeirão Preto area.

Teams can be formed by FEA-RP student organisations members or self-formed groups with the participation of students, alumni, staff, professors and members of research groups.

Each team must send by April 21 to the a project containing: the category and subcategory of the chosen action, name of the team members, related SDG, the action plan and the results expected.

Each team can choose a subcategory listed below. Teams can also propose other subcategories:

a) Marketing:

  • USP Vida Project
  • Funding Campaign for USP's General Hospital at Ribeirão Preto Campus
  • Overcomes COVID-19 action
  • Funding Campaign for SUPERA, an biotechnology incubator for startups at USP

b) Public Sector:

  • Increase the use of masks by the population
  • Support of Ribeirão Preto's City Hall campaign
  • Support to the local population in the scope of Federal Government's "Covid-19 Emergency Aid"

c) NGOs

  • Encourage more artisans and NGOs in the region to produce personal masks (preferably with the appropriate materials and techniques to block the virus)
  • Fundraising for NGOs during the period of crisis

d) Entrepreneurship

  • Specific campaign for companies and individuals to donate mechanical respirators to hospitals in the region
  • Actions aimed at micro and small entrepreneurs to overcome the economic difficulties of these companies
  • Renegotiation of contracts aimed at the final consumer
  • Proposals for logistics and network connection between suppliers, producers and final consumer

e) Education and Welfare

  • Internal community (FEA-RP)
  • External community

f) Environment

  • Hospital waste management and treatment

Teams are expected to carry out the actions of their plan in three weeks and submit a final report describing some evidence of the mode and data on the effectiveness of the action. The PRME FEA-RP will analyse the projects and the results of the actions and indicate the winner of the Award. Effective teams will receive certificates of participation and recognition.

Swinburne University - Australia

Following the Victorian Government's announcement of the closure of non-essential services from 24 March 2020, the Swinburne University community rapidly transformed its on-campus workforce to one based on working remotely from home. It did so seamlessly. The actions taken helped pave a way for our students to continue to experience a quality learning experience in an environment that is safe, for both them and our staff.

The University's student-centred mandate to online learning and teaching is changing how we teach and providing students with a whole new way of learning. Our asynchronous learning approach provides students with the ability to manage learning more flexibly. Learning and teaching activities have been purposefully developed for online learning to replace traditional lectures and tutorials. This may include short videos highlighting components of curriculum of assessment, pre-recorded lectures, narrated power point slides, or online interaction via discussion boards or other online forums. Cognisant of the competing demands facing everyone, students can predominantly engage with their studies at times that are most convenient to them. Students have access to a full suite of online support and services, including Studiosity, for online study help.

Swinburne instituted a series of measures to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of students and staff as a top priority. A number of key initiatives were introduced, with the aim of protecting communities and saving lives:

  • established an incident management group which provided 24/7 monitoring
  • a live blog to ensure availability of up-to-date information
  • adopted social distancing measures (prizes and graduation ceremonies were postponed; large group gatherings and all winter 2020 overseas student mobility programs were cancelled)
  • a dedicated flu clinic in Hawthorn was opened
  • transitioned to fully online teaching delivery and created virtual communities (online teaching commenced on 23 March)
  • established the Swinburne Student Emergency Fund to provide funding of up to $1000 to support students who have been impacted by an emergency, including COVID-19 and bushfires
  • provision of laptops for long term student loans
  • special consideration granted for all students. Students who fail in semester one 2020 will not have their fail grades recorded on their academic transcript and any fail grades during the semester will not have an impact on their GPA

Swinburne live COVID blog and news updates:

Swinburne research into COVID-19:

Almaty Management University (AlmaU) - Kazakhstan

Almaty Management University (AlmaU) experiences transformation of online studies and distance work.

It focuses on the well-being of the students and teaching and administrative staff by continuously supporting faculty members, students and staff via formal and semiformal sessions. In the time of transition AlmaU remains devoted to achieving the SDGs and aims at enhancing internal business process to sustain high quality operations. Here at AlmaU we understand the global trends and shifts its operations to respond in timely and effective way.

As of today, AlmaU operates within its own AlmaUnion system comprised of all tools needed for corporate communications. Students and faculty members work on Moodle & Platonus platforms, widely used in Kazakhstan, all courses are supported by OpenAlmaU and AlmaU Online Center. The class schedule mostly remains the same, and the university is ready to prolong it up until the end of the spring semester if circumstances dictate so. AlmaU Online Library offers the much-needed database remotely. Webinars, video lectures and online streaming by AlmaU teaching and admin staff are the most appropriate ways to set remote contacts and discussions between the students, staff and stakeholders.

Among the main topics are online study technologies, psychological issues in quarantine and isolation, academic issues, professional growth, entrepreneurial approach to the hardship situations and others.

There are obviously situations when the speed of internet lowers due to high volume of users, in some cases making it difficult to sustain the high quality of the teaching process. Nevertheless, the government authorities show great support in promotion of the stable study process on all levels of education. Kazakhstani universities, authorized bodies and expert society unite to launch effective measures and practical recommendations for improving the quality of online studies, life in quarantine and economic support. Despite all exchanges (students/faculty/staff) to and from countries have temporarily stopped according to the official announcements, partner-universities, professional associations, public authorities and diplomatic missions support each other sharing their help and experience.

We wish all our partners to stay safe and healthy.

Deakin University - Australia

In response to COVID -19, the University leadership team has undertaken certain scalable and sustainable steps in line with the State and Federal Government advice. In the current context, maintaining our core business of teaching (and research) remains our over-arching priority. We have leveraged our expertise in online delivery and use of technology as evidenced in the following steps.

Teaching:

  • From 18 March until Friday 27 March, Deakin has replaced all on-campus teaching, including classes (lectures), seminars and pracs, with online delivery to meet the social distancing requirements.
  • We have transitioned from in-person student attendance in classes to online forms of delivery in our Cloud Campus.
  • All seminars are moved into online mode through the Blackboard Collaborate (BbC).
    • Examples of the alternative options for online lectures: Attend the lecture theatre as per normal with no students, and record lecture, Use Kaltura Capture, record and upload via Deakin Video, Use Blackboard Collaborate or Zoom to live lecture
    • Suggested alternatives for exam that are authentic in nature and more applied include: Alternative assessment (essay etc), Online exam - open for a certain period of time, Take home exam, Online Quiz, Oral defence/presentation of content, Support is being provided to teaching staff to ensure online platforms are functioning optimally.

Research:

  • A subcommittee established to coordinate all activities centrally and be a conduit for researchers to raise potential issues, seek guidance on the complex challenges we face and to identify and pre-empt potential issues before they occur.

Others:

  • A dedicated Working from Home site established to assist staff to work from home.
  • Meetings are held via video conference, phone, Skype for Business or Zoom.
  • All international and domestic air travel are banned.
University of Wollongong - Australia

The University of Wollongong is taking a holistic response to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic. UOW made the decision to bring the Autumn mid-session break forward with remote delivery mode operating from April 6th. During the break, a university-wide collaborative effort is underway to prepare for remote delivery. Ensuring staff stay connected with colleagues and students with academics and peer learners is essential and the institutions Information Management & Technology Services personnel are providing rapid, evolving and the latest of technology services. We are very mindful that these are very stressful times and as the Vice-Chancellor has said, "During these stressful and unsettling times, it is important that we look after each other".

As a Business Faculty, we are using a range of responses to ensure the learning environment for our students is consistent and equally as enjoyable. We are very mindful of the different type of learners and ensuring equality is focus when looking at tools and techniques for remote use. This includes a number of delivery platforms including Zoom which allows for break-out rooms, Web-ex for instant chat messaging and whiteboard facilities, Webinars and Universal Captures. For some students, this is there first remote lecture experience and so supporting each other is crucial. Experiments and innovative ideas are free-flowing at the moment and our PRME principles are being realised at this time with dialogue and partnerships crucial to ensuring our values, methods and principles stay our highest priority.

Fiep System - Brazil
  • Classes, from early childhood education to graduate school, were suspended. Events have been canceled or postponed. National and international employee work trips have been suspended, and flexible working hours or home office have been allowed.
  • Fiep System intensified the purchase of hygiene and cleaning supplies and alcohol to contribute to the disinfection of its facilities.
  • A large free vaccination campaign is being carried out by the Fiep System to prevent outbreaks of influenza and minimize the impact of misdiagnosis.
ISAE Brazilian Business School - Brazil

ISAE Brazilian Business School has a Risk Management Committee implemented and active, directly linked to the Presidency and composed by the Institution's board of directors, managers of strategic areas, the legal office and the Press Office.

In the specific case of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, even before the official shutdown announcements from the federal, state and municipal governments, the Committee had already defined its Contingency Plan with the following actions:

  • Mapping the current situation of the institution areas and potential risks.
  • Definition of scenarios and actions to prevent the spread of the virus.
  • Levels of shutdown of internal activities: attentive to the well-being of students, academic activities were suspended from the 16th of March, some programs moving to online activities. Employees from the risk group (seniors and pregnant women) were allocated to the home office in the previous week, early in confirmed cases in Brazil. Currently, all ISAE employees are working on a home office model.
  • Institution of official spokesperson for employees and external public.
  • Definition of an official and exclusive channel for questions about the situation.
  • Preparation and communication with internal public (employees, students and teachers and suppliers).
  • Communication with the external public with an official bulletin updated daily (social networks, press office).
  • Daily Committee meetings to update and manage the crisis.
Gordon S. Lang School of Business and Economics, University of Guelph - Canada
  • All employees have been asked to work from home whenever operationally feasible. Only those whose physical presence is needed for work will be on campus.
  • Classes were cancelled week of March 16th and are planned to resume March 23rd in in an alternative-format delivery; no face-to-face classes or exams will be held for the rest of the semester.
  • Students were asked to vacate residences -- however understanding that not all students could leave, continued services were to be offered to those who needed to remain.
  • The community is being encouraged not to participate in large community gathering and social events.
  • Increased information and suggestions for health and wellness of the Lang community.
  • Increased communication from University leadership on initiatives as they occurred.
  • Business continuity plans were put into place to allow for continuation of provision of critical services.
  • Most interestingly, a number of grass roots initiatives have emerged from this crisis. For example, one community member was involved in setting up the CareMongeringGuelph Facebook page highlighting community of care and support initiatives. Another initiative that has recently emerged is the development of the webpage GuelphCoronavirus.ca which lists resources available to the community. Faculty are also offering support and information to students via social media/video conferencing.
Grenoble École de Management - France

At this very special time for all of us, we would like to inform you that our pedagogical and administrative teams remain active by working remotely. We have set up an emergency procedure to pay our suppliers' invoices for deliveries or services that have been completed by March 13, 2020. We ask you to send the electronic invoice to achats@grenoble-em.com with your bank details and the order reference of the goods or services on the invoice. There is no need to send them by post after that. We will process these invoices it as soon as possible in this constrained context. Please note that no delivery is currently possible as all our buildings are closed in accordance with government directives.

Grenoble École de Management expresses its full support in this difficult economic context and is already preparing its recovery alongside you. Take care of yourselves, your staff and your loved ones.

ICN Business School - France
  • All the learning material has been uploaded on the intranet platform so that courses continue as planned.
  • For the admissions, all interviews between teams of professors and alumni with candidates will be virtual. Some will take place during the spring holidays to make up for lost time.
  • The messages to the students seem to be reassuring as the student replies to personnel indicate that they are not panicking. Moreover, the students are very kind in the way they communicate to staff.
  • The Dean communicates to staff on a daily basis demonstrating the School's reactivity and solidarity between staff members.
  • The quick answers from the professors indicate that they are working in teams to adapt to on-line learning and inventing new methods which are transforming this constraint into an opportunity to try new ways of teaching.
INSEAD - France

As the business school for the world, INSEAD has been on its toes since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak in China. With campuses in Europe, Asia and the Middle East, it is imperative that we provide a quick global response with the health and wellbeing of our community as a top priority. We immediately took action to protect students, faculty and staff starting with our Asia Campus and then other campuses as the crisis unfolded. We communicated those actions and the latest government regulation to ensure everyone can take their own steps to stay safe.

When it became clear that mobility restrictions were necessary, INSEAD rapidly moved to online teaching and faculty are integrating their teaching topics and COVID-19. To give leaders insight into how a health crisis can impact business, we are curating expertise from different angles of business research and publishing relevant articles on our INSEAD Knowledge platform. INSEAD faculty have extensive expertise on humanitarian response and healthcare, which we put into the public domain to guide leaders. We are also launching a series of open webinars on navigating the COVID-19 crisis. As a school, we want to lead by example and approach every moment with academic perspective. So as we move our global workforce to remote work, we provide daily mindfulness sessions to keep people healthy and connected. We are also soliciting data from remote workers to better understand the implications of this level of remote work. And we are supporting our alumni community on-the-ground responses through our Project GreenCross.

Visit www.inse.ad/coronavirus for more.

Toulouse Business School - France

TBS works to ensure the continuous education of our students at this time, guaranteeing that their training - and preparation for their future careers - continues in the best possible conditions. Our professors, IT and pedagogical innovation teams work together non-stop to put fast and efficient tools into place. Already, we manage 50 virtual classes, across all our programs, each day. In addition to this, we provide daily language classes and coaching in small groups via our applications. To keep our professors, coaches and personnel updated and supported - and therefore to ensure the smooth-running of all programs - our Support and Internal Communications teams send out daily communications to the TBS community:

  • Student Support: Daily communications from teaching and program staff to all students, providing continuous academic support and ensuring their well-being
  • Distance Teaching: Support for teaching staff and academic teams, Video tutorials, Applications for distance teaching and assessments, Feedback exchange
  • Homeworking: Technical support for academic and administrative staff, Video tutorials, Applications for homeworking, virtual groupwork and meetings
  • TBS Community Working Together: Regular TBS Working Together newsletter to support all staff, Latest COVID news, Advice and support to assist our personnel in adapting to working from home - keeping the TBS community motivated, moving and united
  • Social Network Outreach: Coordinated by our Community Managers in order to ensure national & international outreach to our students, stakeholders and community, Sharing our pride in the work being done by our students, professors and personnel at this challenging time.
Victoria University of Wellington - New Zealand

Wellington School of Business and Government (Advanced PRME signatory) at Victoria University of Wellington (New Zealand) has been using a Reimage Education Award-winning (Bronze Award in Oceania) learning tool about sustainability challenges and the Sustainable Development Goals for several years now. The initial motivation to develop this VR-based learning tool about a remote island in Fiji was to give students a real feel of sustainability and climate change challenges through the perspectives of a local Fijian community without the need to produce Greenhouse Gas emissions to travel there. This tool is now key in a course on Sustainable Destination Management where it allows students to stay connected to the case study site in the Pacific, despite the travel restrictions, and to continue working on their decision-forcing group project about this remote Fijian island and its sustainability and tourism pressures.

As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve the learning tool usually run from university computers has been made available for students to download on to their home computers so that they can visit the Fijian island, its community, and pristine beaches from the comfort of their home.

Grisons University of Applied Sciences - Switzerland

The Grisons University of Applied Sciences activated the emergency management due to the spread of the coronavirus at the end of January and has meanwhile expanded into a core team and crisis management team with several task forces. Since Monday, 16 March 2020, distance learning has been used in all Bachelor's, Master's and continuing education courses. Also, the research activities do not stand still, the exchange with the research partners was simply integrated into the virtual room. In this way knowledge can continue to be generated for our region and Switzerland.

Statement of our president: "For the benefit of our students and research partners, we want to support students and project partners even under these difficult conditions and continue to provide services. The health of all of us remains to be the most important issue."

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