Procedures for Export Compliance

Procedures for a selection of common activities are provided below. To view the complete Procedures for Export Compliance, click here.

Exports and Deemed Exports Generally

Exports of controlled items and information are governed by complex legal regimes, and sometimes require special permission (in the form of an export license or other authorization) from an agency of the federal government. Generally, exports of physical items are controlled either by the State Department (for military and space items) or the Commerce Department (for dual-use items). Not all items are controlled for all destinations, but some items may not be sent to specified individuals, or used for specified end-uses.

The Empowered Official and Export Compliance Officer share responsibility for determining whether a particular export requires a license and, if so, applying for that license. Faculty members, staff, and students cannot apply for export licenses on their own. In order to facilitate these determinations, exporters should be able to provide answers to the following questions:

  1. What is the item to be exported? This includes a detailed technical description of the item, its specifications or operating parameters, and any contractual non-disclosure or end-use restrictions that apply to the item.
  2. Where will the item be exported to? Certain items cannot be shipped to certain countries, regardless of sensitivity or intended use.
  3. Who will receive the item? Certain individuals and organizations are prohibited from receiving exports from U.S. persons. The Export Compliance Officer will need to screen recipients against lists of restricted parties maintained by the federal government.
  4. What is the intended end-use? The federal government prohibits exports of items that will be used to create weapons of mass destruction or conduct criminal activities. Because some equipment that is used for legitimate research purposes may also be used for unlawful activities, export licenses require detailed descriptions of how items will be used once they reach their destination.

If the Export Compliance Officer determines that a license is necessary based on the responses to these questions, he or she will apply for a license on behalf of the researcher. Depending on the item to be exported, the government may take up to six months (and in some cases even longer) to process a license application, and there is no guarantee that a license will be issued. No exports may take place until the required license is issued.


Export Compliance Officer
Kathy Gentry

Controlled Transactions

Researchers who wish to conduct business, including research collaborations, with a person or entity in a foreign country should consult with the Export Compliance Officer prior to entering any agreements.

Urbana-Champaign is prohibited by the FACR and EAR from engaging in collaborations with certain individuals and organizations identified on the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons ListDenied Persons List, and Entity List. Collectively, these are referred to as restricted parties. Restricted parties can include companies, universities, non-profit organizations, and individuals.

University personnel are prohibited from conducting any business, including sharing research data, with restricted parties, except as specifically approved by the cognizant federal agency. Only the Export Compliance Officer is authorized to seek such approval on behalf of the university and university personnel.

Keep in mind that the employees of a restricted entity are subject to the same restrictions even if they are not individually listed as a restricted party. This means that the following transactions are prohibited and would require prior federal authorization:

  • Sharing unpublished research data with an employee of a restricted university
  • Hosting a visiting scholar who is employed by a restricted university (note that this applies to faculty and postdocs, as well as any students who would receive full or partial funding from a restricted university while visiting)
  • Traveling to a restricted university to present research, conduct a workshop, or teach a class

Other transactions with certain foreign persons, including nationals and entities of countries subject to United States trade embargoes, require a license or other authorization issued by the Office of Foreign Assets Control. Transactions requiring a license include but are not limited to:

  • Hiring or sponsoring an employment visa on behalf of a national of an embargoed country
  • Hosting a foreign scholar who is a national of an embargoed country
  • Accepting money or other support from an individual or entity in an embargoed country

If the Export Compliance Officer determines that a transaction requires a license or other authorization under the FACR, he or she will apply for the required licenses and authorizations on behalf of the university. The Export Compliance Officer will work with the affected researcher or unit to determine whether a transaction is subject to federal sanctions. If the transaction does require a license or authorization, however, only the Export Compliance Officer is authorized to apply for it. No transactions may take place before the required license or authorization has been obtained.


Export Compliance Officer
Kathy Gentry

Associate Director of Purchasing, Contracts
Brad Henson

International Travel

You should be careful not to travel outside the United States with controlled items or computers or other devices that contain controlled information. If you wish to travel internationally for the purposes of conducting or presenting research, you should consult with the Export Compliance Officer to determine whether any restrictions apply. In particular, if you are involved in controlled research, you must contact the Export Compliance Officer prior to finalizing any international travel plans.

The FACR may restrict U.S. citizens’ and permanent residents’ ability to travel to embargoed destinations. In order to travel to Cuba, you must obtain authorization from the Office of Foreign Assets Control. If you would like to travel to other embargoed countries (like Iran or Syria), or other sensitive regions, you should consult with the Export Compliance Officer and International Health and Safety prior to finalizing travel plans.

If you plan to travel to an embargoed country or a country subject to a State Department travel advisory, you may also be required to obtain approval from International Safety and Security. You can find more information about the university's travel policies here.


Export Compliance Officer
Kathy Gentry

Associate Director for International Safety and Security
Andrew Collum

Technology Control Plans

University personnel may purchase or otherwise acquire controlled items for use in research and other activities. While controlled items may be used to conduct fundamental research without affecting the ability to freely disseminate the results of the research, controlled items must be handled in the following ways:

  • ITAR-controlled items should be secured according to a technology control plan developed by the responsible researcher in conjunction with the Export Compliance Officer, the researcher’s department, and any other affected compliance unit, regardless of whether foreign persons will have access to the controlled items or whether the controlled items will otherwise be exported. Additionally, technology controls plans and disposition of ITAR-controlled items require the approval of the Empowered Official.
  • The Export Compliance Officer may determine that a technology control plan is necessary to secure EAR-controlled items, in light of the nature of the item, the activity it will be used for, and the persons who require access to it. If the Export Compliance Officer determines that a technology control plan is required for an EAR-controlled item, he or she will assist the responsible researcher in developing an appropriate plan. Disposal of EAR-controlled dual-use items should be coordinated with the Export Compliance Officer in addition to any other responsible administrative unit.

You can download a template technology control plan by clicking here.


Export Compliance Officer
Kathy Gentry

Violations and Enforcement

Because violations of export controls, including inadvertent failures to comply, may result in severe criminal and civil penalties both for individual faculty, staff, and students, as well as for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign as an institution, export compliance is the shared responsibility of all members of the university community. While we are committed to openness in research and in the classroom, it may from time to time be necessary to restrict certain individuals’ ability to conduct, access the results of, or otherwise participate in certain research projects and other university activities.

If you suspect that a violation has occurred, you should report the suspected violation directly to the Empowered Official or to the Export Compliance Officer. In the event that a suspected violation of this policy is reported to the Empowered Official or the Export Compliance Officer, the Empowered Official will initiate an investigation in conjunction with University Counsel and any other affected administrative or academic units.

The Empowered Official may need to inspect documents relevant to the investigation, including lab notebooks, security records, and internal communications. You should keep these documents in a safe place and be prepared to produce them on request. During the course of an investigation, the Empowered Official may also order personnel to cease any university activities related to the suspected violation.


Empowered Official
Dave Richardson
Associate Vice Chancellor for Research and Director of Sponsored Programs

Export Compliance Officer
Kathy Gentry