Office of Research & Sponsored Programs

Export Controls


Export controls and trade sanctions are the United States laws and regulations that control and restrict the release of critical technologies, software, equipment, chemical, biological materials and other materials, and services to foreign nationals and foreign countries for reasons of foreign policy and national security.

These laws apply to virtually all fields of science and engineering. They restrict the shipment, transmission, or transfer of certain commodities, software, technology, and services from the U.S. to foreign countries. Deemed exports, i.e. the release of controlled information to foreign nationals located in the U.S., are also restricted under these laws and regulations. Export control laws apply to all activities—not just sponsored research projects.

For projects that include the use of export-controlled information, the projects fall under the Commerce Department's Export Administration Regulations (EAR), the State Department's International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), and The Office of Foreign Assets Control

The Principal Investigator has the Following Responsibilities Related to Export Controls

Prior to commencing any research, the PI (Principal Investigator) must review and cooperate with ORSP to determine whether any technical information or technology involved in the research is subject to the export control law or regulations and, if so, whether any exclusion is available under the export control regulations.

The PI must in cooperation with the ORSP re-evaluate that determination before changing the scope or adding new staff to the project to determine if such changes alter the initial determination. The PI must ensure that export determinations are made far enough in advance to obtain an export license from appropriate agencies, when required and if available. The PI must ensure that foreign nationals are excluded from access to restricted data or technology until the availability of an exclusion has been determined, or an export license has been obtained.

The University will assist the PI in assessing the application of such regulations, but primary compliance responsibility rests with the PI of the research. A project subject to export controls must have a Technology Control Plan (TPC) in place that outlines the procedures to be taken to handle and safeguard the Export-Controlled Information. It is the responsibility of the PI to develop a written TCP, which then must be approved and signed by the UMass Boston Vice Provost for Research. 

Related Policies

Export Controls