The Departments of Commerce, State and Treasury are the primary agencies in charged with the implementation and enforcement of export regulations.  Each of the Departments is responsible for different areas of exports though there are times when jurisdiction may overlap.

“Export” is defined very broadly to include any oral, written, electronic or visual disclosure, shipment transfer or transmission of commodities, technology, information, technical data, assistance or software codes to

  • Anyone outside of the U.S. (including US citizen)
  • A non-US individual (wherever they are)
  • A foreign embassy or affiliate

Research activity at US academic institutions is regulated by the following Federal agencies:

U.S. Department
Office/section responsible for export controls
Items controlled
Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Controls  (OFAC) Foreign Assets Control Regulations (FACR) Sanctions programs can govern travel abroad, transactions with foreign individuals and entities or in specific foreign countries, and export and import of items.
Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) Export Administration Regulations (EAR) Dual-use goods, software, and technology predominantly civilian in nature but may include military applications.


Antiboycott provisions.

State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) Defense articles and technical data. Goods, software, or information specifically designed, developed, or modified for military or intelligence application.


Defense services.