Butler Library

Export Control and other Regulations

International Research/Export Control

Export Control and other Regulations

Visa Issues for International Scholars

Schools and departments of the University may wish to bring nonimmigrant personnel to Columbia in positions of academic teaching and research. These individuals are collectively referred to as "international scholars." An international scholar holds a temporary, nonimmigrant visa, engages in scholarly activities including teaching or research at the University, and is not enrolled in a formal degree program.

As of February 20, 2011, international visa applications for international scholars require completion of a "Deemed Export" certification known as a "Certification Regarding the Release of Controlled Technology or Technical Data to Foreign Persons in the U.S."  Deemed export refers to the "export" of technology or technical information regulated under the federal export control regulations, not by shipping it overseas but by "transferring" it to a foreign national in the United States.

The new federal requirement states that employers must certify that they have reviewed the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and the International Traffic in Arms (ITAR) and have determined whether a license is required from the U.S. Department of Commerce or the U.S. Department of State to allow an employee access to controlled technology. Technology and technical data provided to a foreign national within the U.S. is considered an export. This attestation is required for all H-1B petitions and O-1 petitions. More information can be found on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website.

The hiring supervisor, principal investigator, Department Chair, or other appropriate University authority responsible for oversight of an employee's work and access to technology, must attest to whether or not a license is required.  Questions should be directed to the Office of Research Compliance and Training or the Office of General Counsel.

Departments wishing to hire non-U.S. workers in a subset of temporary visa categories (i.e., H-1B, H-1B1 (Singapore/Chile), L-1, and O-1A status), are encouraged to review the Export Control Guidance for Visa Applications.  More information can be found on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website.

Information on bringing international scholars to Columbia can be found on the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) website for the Morningside campus and on the International Affairs Office (IAO) website for CUMC. The Certification form is available here.