Fundamental Research Exclusion
The term Fundamental Research means "basic and applied research in science and engineering, the results of which ordinarily are published and shared broadly within the scientific community, as distinguished from proprietary research and from industrial development, design, production, and product utilization, the results of which ordinarily are restricted for proprietary or national security reasons."
Research results within the definition of fundamental research are excluded from the requirements of export control laws and regulations. No license is needed to share these results, even if they relate to items or technology that are otherwise controlled. Of significance to the University is that this exclusion permits U.S. universities to allow foreign members of their communities (e.g., students, faculty, and visitors) to participate in research projects involving export-controlled information on campus in the U.S. without the need for a license, where information is controlled by EAR. However, where such information is controlled under ITAR, the State Department has taken the position that foreign persons must be licensed or eligible for an exemption before information about controlled items or technology can be shared. Thus, where a research project involves equipment or information that is controlled under ITAR, it is imperative that ORPA conduct a review of the information to be shared to determine whether an exemption may exist or whether a license may be required. In no case, does the fundamental research exlcusion permit the transfer of export controlled information, materials, or items abroad, even to research collaborators, except under very limited circumstances.
Thus, the Fundamental Research Exclusion enables the University to conduct the majority of research activities that fall under the definition of fundamental research without the constraints of export control laws. Research performed on University premises normally will be considered as fundamental research unless the university or its researchers accept sponsor restrictions on publication of scientific and technical information resulting from the project or activity.