Natasha Beeton, freelance science writer and researcher on Kolabtree, provides a comprehensive list of COVID-19 resources for businesses and researchers, including funding sources and volunteering opportunities.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been unprecedented global mobilization to gather resources, funding, and knowledge. Here, we provide a list of COVID-19-related resources available to researchers, businesses, and organizations in the fight to overcome COVID-19.
COVID-19 basic research and applied research funding sources
The funding landscape for COVID-19 projects remains highly dynamic given the rapid and changing response of governments and funding organizations to the pandemic. While some funding proposals are now closed (e.g., Wellcome Trust), it is certainly worthwhile to regularly check the links below as new calls for proposals may be added at any time.
Further, while some of the below resources are aimed at researchers working at academic institutions and research organizations, many are also open to individuals, businesses, and organizations. The eligibility details are usually clearly provided for each call.
- RESEARCHconnect is a European funding database that offers an excellent and regularly updated resource on COVID-19 research funding available in the EU. The types of projects funded vary greatly, and range from the impact of COVID-19 on patients with HIV, funding to accelerate the development and authorization of vaccines, the effect of the pandemic on air pollution levels, and the link between ethnicity and adverse COVID-19 outcomes. There are also sister sites, Vindsubsidies Netherlands and GRANTFinder, specific to the Netherlands and the UK, respectively.
- Grants.gov and betaSAM.gov are USA databases of federal funding opportunities, and targeted keyword searches yield funds specific to coronavirus/COVID-19 projects. Opportunities are available for individuals, businesses, not-for-profits, and private institutions, among others.
- The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) currently has an open call for proposals related to rapid COVID-19 vaccine development.
- The UK Collaborative on Development Research (UKCDR) has a webpage that lists UK-specific and international funding opportunities such as the UKRI COVID-19 Rapid Response Rolling Call and the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator partnership between the Wellcome Trust, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Mastercard.
- The Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness (GLOPID-R) publishes funding opportunities in the EU related to infectious diseases.
- The Global Health Network, Frontiers, Johns Hopkins University, and the University of Oxford all provide dashboards of COVID-19 funding opportunities in the US, UK, and elsewhere, offered by the likes of Pfizer, the CDC in the USA, the European Commission, and the Novo Nordisk Foundation.
- The European Research Area (ERA) Corona Platform of the European Commission lists several COVID-19 funding opportunities.
Other COVID-19 funding and partnering opportunities for individuals, businesses, and organizations
- The World Bank has provided a map and listing of resources supporting SMEs around the world to deal with the financial impact of the pandemic.
- The COVID-19 Innovation Hub provides a global platform for individuals, researchers, organizations, and businesses to submit a description of their innovations for partners to review and potentially fund and develop further.
- Gingko Bioworks is offering its R&D infrastructure free of charge to companies and academic laboratories developing COVID-19 diagnostics, drugs, and vaccines.
- GrantStation provides a searchable and regularly updated global database of COVID-19-related funding opportunities for nonprofits, small businesses, journalists, and artists.
- Just One Giant Lab is an open research and innovation laboratory looking for partners to develop an open-source methodology for SARS-CoV-2 diagnosis.
- The COVID Accelerator provides a pitching and networking platform for entrepreneurs building solutions to fight the pandemic.
- Coronavirus Tech Handbook provides a more informal but useful resource on all aspects of the COVID-19 response, including many for innovators and businesses.
COVID-19 data information resources for research and innovation
- EMBL-EBI and partners have set up the COVID-19 Data Portal to accelerate research. This portal provides access to the latest COVID-19 sequence, expression, and protein structure data.
- The Australian government’s Patent Analytics Hub provides innovators with a global database of patented technologies relevant to the COVID-19 response (there are categories e.g., respiratory support devices and medical diagnostics). They also provide centlPEDE, an almost real-time feed of the latest in COVID-19 technology, manufacturing, and research.
- ResearchSquare and bioRxiv list preprints of scientific articles related to COVID-19 to expedite access to the latest research.
- The UKCDR also offers the COVID-19 Research Project Tracker, which is a live database of funded research projects, to enable researchers to identify gaps and opportunities and to coordinate the global research response to COVID-19.
- A large number of leading publishers have committed to making all of their COVID-19 and coronavirus-related publications and supporting data freely accessible in PubMed Central (PMC) and other public repositories to support ongoing response efforts.
- Several of these publishers have provided COVID-19 research and clinical information hubs, such as the comprehensive one provided by Elsevier (they also provide an infographic on global research trends and a COVID-19 Healthcare Hub and Research Hub among other resources), Springer Nature, Wiley, and Nature Research.
- The Institute of Development Studies (IDS) hosts the K4D COVID-10 Resource Hub, which provides regularly updated summaries of learnings obtained thus far in the fight against the pandemic. These include Health Evidence Summaries, Demographic Evidence Summaries, and Rapid Evidence Reviews.
- The Global Health Network offers a COVID-19 Research Implementation and Knowledge Hub that provides a platform for trusted organizations to share their COVID-10 research protocols, tools, and resources to accelerate and standardize research in this area.
- Besides listing funding opportunities, GLOPID-R also provides resources related to COVID-19 and general infectious disease research.
- COVIDbase provides a different take with its curated list of COVID-19 resources, with categories such as free services, funding opportunities, resource matchmaking, data + protocols, and hardware.
COVID-19 information resources for businesses and organizations
- The Connecting Business initiative (CBi) offers an excellent list of resources for businesses globally related to topics such as continuity planning, industry-specific guidance, and preparing the workplace in response to COVID-19.
- Governments are providing comprehensive COVID-19 guidance for businesses, employers, and staff, much of which is applicable elsewhere in the world (see e.g., these UK and USA sites), ranging from social distancing principles to waste management and food safety.
- Science|Business is a European news and networking portal for biotechnology firms and other businesses responding to the pandemic.
- Health Education England has launched free online e-learning courses available to both UK and international users. While these are mostly geared toward health professionals, some of this material is relevant to business as well (e.g., correct use of PPE).
- SkillsPlatform and eIntegrity similarly provide COVID-19 e-learning content for healthcare professionals and other key workers, much of which is available for free.
- The World Health Organization provides courses on proper hand hygiene and use of PPE, as well as a webpage full of downloadable resources for businesses and the general public on various aspects of fighting the pandemic.
- The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in the USA offers guidance on COVID-19 preparedness and response for individuals, organizations, and businesses.
- Alison provides a free online awareness course on COVID-19 relevant to individuals and businesses.
Volunteers to assist with COVID-19-related research and projects
- Data Against COVID is a site where clinicians and researchers can link with machine learners, bioinformaticians, epidemiologists, and statisticians who are volunteering to assist with processing, analyzing, and visualizing COVID-19 data.
- Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO) has created a Coronavirus Hub to match volunteers, expertise, and supplies with companies and organizations in need of these resources.
- COVID-19 Pandemic Shareable Scientist Response Database lists hundreds of scientists from the USA who wish to volunteer their time, expertise, equipment, and consumables to aid COVID-19 response.
- COVID-19 Tech Support matches tech volunteers in IT, web development, etc., with non-profits and communities.
- Stanford’s COVID-19 Response Innovation Lab is offering free personnel and domain expertise support to affiliated teams.
- Crowdfight COVID-19 is another platform linking researchers and companies with volunteer experts to assist with COVID-19 projects.
- Helpful Engineering is an open-source incubator that links engineers with groups needing assistance with COVID-19 and other innovations in engineering, community resources, software, and manufacturing.
- Help With COVID is an excellent portal matching volunteers with expertise in a variety of fields to different COVID19 projects.
Resources for university/college students and faculty
- Several online learning platforms are sharing their expertise in teaching virtually, e.g., Epigeum of the Oxford University Press, Pearson, and FutureLearn.
- Thousands of free eTextbooks from key academic publishers such as Taylor & Francis, Macmillan Education, McGraw Hill Education, and Cambridge University Press have been made available by Kortext.
- In some countries, COVID-19 hardship funds have been made available to students by government, e.g., in Scotland via institutes such as the University of Edinburgh, and in the USA via the CARES Act. While many governments have not yet earmarked specific funding to support students, individual universities and colleges are increasingly providing support in various forms, and it is worth checking directly with your institution.
- In the UK, the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) and the British Council have provided website resources for international students facing hardship at this time, with the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) guiding both local and international students in the UK.
- In the USA, a student-led initiative, Rise, is offering students COVID-19 support in finding the relevant financial and other resources.
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