One of the world’s largest science publishers, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) said on Monday that it has lifted restrictions on China’s telecom giant Huawei, allowing its employees to peer-review and edit research papers submitted to IEEE journals.
“IEEE has received the requested clarification from the U.S. Department of Commerce on the applicability of these export control restrictions to IEEE’s publication activities. Based on this new information, employees of Huawei and its affiliates may participate as peer reviewers and editors in our publication process,” said a statement on its official website.
All IEEE members, regardless of employer, can continue to participate in all activities of the IEEE, read the statement.
This comes after Chinese academia made a joint statement criticizing IEEE’s “unreasonable restrictions” over Huawei on June 2.
Ten institutes affiliated with the China Association for Science and Technology (CAST) denounced IEEE’s early action, saying “they are shocked.”
“It’s serious discrimination against scientists and institutions, a severe retrogression in the development of academic exchanges, and has become a crisis in the international academic and technological communities,” the statement said.
“It should be a fundamental right for researchers to participate in peer review without distinction of nationality, race or institution,” the statement read.
On May 16, the U.S. Department of Commerce applied export control restrictions to Huawei and its 68 affiliates.
The IEEE complies with U.S. government regulations which restrict the ability of the listed Huawei companies and their employees to participate in certain activities that are not generally open to the public. This includes certain aspects of the publication peer review and editorial process.
It stated on May 29 if the U.S. government clarified the application of the U.S. Export Administration Regulations with respect to peer review, they would provide an update to the IEEE community.