Export Controls

Export controls are federal government regulations that govern activities related to conducting education or research abroad and with foreign partners and individuals, such as:

  • transfer of controlled items, equipment, materials, software, technology, or data, for any period of time
  • international students and scholars or companies in the US
  • international travel
  • collaborations with certain countries, entities, and individuals subject to US sanctions
  • international financial transactions

Boston University has developed its own policy statement on Export Controls, as it is committed to complying with US export control laws and regulations, including the:

What You Need to Do

To ensure compliance, you should carefully consider the material on the Export Control website for Research Compliance. Violation of export control laws and regulations can result in significant civil and criminal penalties for you, your colleagues, and the University. Therefore, you are strongly encouraged to consult with the University Export Control Director when questions or issues arise.

Note that laptops and GPS devices may be restricted upon entrance into particular countries, which will mostly affect activities involving equipment, technical software, or technical information in other media, including presentations.

Before initiating your project or traveling abroad:

  • Complete the Laptop/GPS Checklist if planning to take such equipment and keep it on file for 5 years from the date of travel.
  • Review current US Department of Treasury Sanctions and Consolidated Screening Lists if collaborating with foreign colleagues or entities, or for projects that involve collaboration with or providing services or assistance to a foreign country or a government-controlled organization, and to ensure that you don’t need government authorization.
  • Confer with the University’s Export Control Director if your research may involve or be shared with an individual or entity on any of the above lists.
  • Complete the Research Project Export Control Checklist for any sponsored research project, which will alert Sponsored Programs to potential issues.
  • Familiarize yourself with the import requirements of the destination country and consult the Shipments/Transport—Questions to Answer page to determine whether an export license is required.
  • Contact the University’s Export Control Director about any “red flags” and issues concerning publication or access restrictions.

Training, which can be customized to your needs, is available online through BU Research Compliance.