Research Projects

First Steps

Before accepting a research award, ask a few questions to determine if a license from the Departments of Commerce, State or Treasury are needed to conduct the research.  Answering “yes” to any of these questions does not automatically mean that your research is controlled under export regulations.  It helps you and UNTHSC evaluate the potential risks associated with your project.

  1. Does your research involve development or use of any data, hardware, materials, technology, software or services listed on the US Munitions List or the Commerce Control List?Commerce Control List Category 1 – Special Materials and Related Equipment, Chemicals, “Microorganisms,” and “Toxins” includes designated human, animal and plant pathogens, zoonoses and toxins which may require a license from the Bureau of Industry and Security.
  2. Are you developing or using encrypted software in which you will have access to the applicable source code?
  3. Were you asked by the sponsor to provide the nationalities/citizenship status of the researchers working on this research (excluding training grants, fellowships and career development awards)?
  4. Are there provisions in the project that restrict activities to U.S. citizens?
  5. Are you aware of restrictions on publication of the results of your research or pre-publication review & approval by the sponsor?
  6. Are you planning to ship or take material/prototype/samples (including biological/hazardous materials)/equipment/hardware/technology/software/technical drawings/schematics/data abroad?-
  7. Are you planning to work with institutions or companies located abroad?
  8. Do you anticipate receipt of proprietary information subject to a Non-Disclosure Agreement?
  9. Do you plan to travel to a destination on the following Sanctioned Programs and Countries list? If you answered “yes” to any of the above, complete question 10.
  10. Are any participants (scholars, students, companies, universities) on the Denied Party Lists?
  11. Are any federal funds being used to support research conducted in another country?
  12. Are any funds being received from a foreign governmental agency or organization?

If you answered “yes” to any of the questions above, or if you need assistance with the questions, please contact the UNTHSC International Compliance Officer.

Controlled Research

A Principal Investigator (PI) working on controlled research is required, along with the guidance from the HSC International Compliance Officer, to develop and follow a Technology Control Plan which includes documents to demonstrate that the PI is in compliance with federal regulations regarding the controlled subject matter.

Unsolicited Requests

Faculty members often receive unsolicited emails or phone calls from students, researchers, or companies from outside of UNTHSC to discuss collaboration, research results, publications etc. Conduct due diligence in communicating with individuals that you do not know and/or you cannot easily verify their credentials.

You should always screen all requests for assistance or collaboration to ensure that these are legitimate requests, especially if these are related to controlled research, equipment, technologies or data, or unpublished results of your research.

You may meet other researchers at meetings, conferences, seminars, or other professional or social events or you may simply receive a phone call, email, or a visit from someone that you don’t know. Sharing too much information about your research could not only jeopardize your research efforts, it could also violate export control regulations.

Consider some of the questions below before you engage in collaboration or provide assistance to researchers you don’t know.

  • Does the request come from a researcher at a university/institution known to you?
  • Does the university/institution have a website?
  • Does the researcher use an organizational email or did he/she use a private email?
  • Does the researcher have a website where you can verify his/her area of expertise?
  • Is the request consistent with his/her area of expertise?
  • Does the researcher have sufficient level of scientific expertise for the questions asked?
  • Did you call the individual and her/his department head to verify his/her affiliation with particular institution?
  • Is the request consistent with the type of questions/requests that you would receive from your colleagues at other US institutions?
  • Did you try to locate information about this individual online?
  • Have any of your colleagues ever met/collaborated with the individual?
  • Are there any papers that he/she published in scientific journals?
  • Is he or she asking questions related to your “unpublished” research, security procedures at your Center/Lab, or whether you work on military/space or controlled technology or research?
  • Did you screen the foreign researcher against all of the “Restricted Party Lists?” The U.S. Government maintains a consolidated list of parties with restrictions on certain exports, reexports or transfers of items.  The above link provides access to “” where you will find the Consolidated Screening List Search Engine.  Access the search engine and enter information related to the party you want to screen.