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  • Dan Powers

What Will Be NORMAL This Fall? COVID-19 Impacts Survey

In late March, 2020, operations in Colorado at nearly all federal research laboratories, university and college research institutes, and related federally-funded scientific organizations were suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through April, 2020 we were scrambling to adjust to travel restrictions, workplace shutdowns, school closures, cancelled events, at-home schooling, virtual meetings and the realization that our work, our kids’ schooling, our summer plans, our organizations’ budgets – nearly every crucial piece of our lives was not going to return to normal soon.

This unknown trajectory for society quickly added to the uncertainty felt about the public health threats of COVID-19. There became a pragmatic urgency to trend out the reality of how work and life could function with this new social distancing paradigm.

CO-LABS surveyed our network of scientists, economic development experts, professional researchers, academics, private sector technologists and engineers to learn the issues they were facing immediately and their outlook for possibly new normal attributes of our lives in the fall of 2020.

We offer this quick overview and further anonymized comments to help inform your perspective on the new priorities, activities, challenges, concerns and topics that may not have existed – or at least were not nearly so impactful – before the COVID-19 pandemic.

We will also share our findings with elected officials and civic leaders to assist with policy and support efforts at the federal level.

Note: This survey will remain open through August 31, 2020. We will release an update if appropriate – please contribute your thoughts at

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