The Institute - September 2019 - 3


editor's note
doing so in a way that is consistent
with our international focus. This
commitment is becoming increasingly important at a time when IEEE
must emphasize its apolitical, global,
and technically focused mission.
As I noted in my email to members in early June, IEEE recently
found itself reacting to regulatory
actions in the United States. In
mid-May, the U.S. Department of
Commerce imposed export controls
on Huawei and 68 of its affiliate companies, naming them on its "entity
list," effectively barring U.S. firms
from selling technology to those companies without government approval.
Several days after the export controls were imposed, the Commerce
Department announced further
licensing rules regarding interactions with Huawei and its affiliates;
one rule explicitly identified IEEE
by name. We had to react quickly
to these actions to provide guidance to IEEE volunteers because of
the significant penalties that would
be imposed for violations.
In guidance provided to members,
we noted that almost all activities
conducted by IEEE (such as holding
meetings and conferences, receiving and publishing articles in IEEE
journals, participating in standards
development, and organizing educational activities) were not impacted
by the sanctions and were open to
all, including the companies and
their employees on the entity list.
The only exception was the
potential legal risk under U.S. export
law of our peer-review process of
transferring confidential (unpublished) manuscripts to a small
number of Huawei employees.
Our guidelines asked IEEE volunteers to refrain temporarily from
involving Huawei's employees in the
confidential peer-review process while
we continued to seek interpretation
and clarification of the regulations

from the U.S. government-which we
received on 31 May. We immediately
reissued guidance, lifting all
restrictions on the peer-review and
editorial processes.
During that time, posts on social
media-including some picked up
by the news media-stated that
IEEE had imposed a total ban
on employees of Huawei and that
we were taking actions contrary
to the interests of our members in
China. That was never the case and
not our intent. I am aware that many
IEEE members were upset to see their
organization discussed negatively. I
apologize for any miscommunication
that may have occurred and for the
concerns raised.
My June email was an attempt to
set the record straight: that IEEE
took the action purely to protect
our members and the institute from
legal risk. We worked quickly to get
clarity from the U.S. government
and to eliminate even temporary
restrictions. We value the support
and contributions of all our members around the world.
IEEE remains committed to serving our global membership by
building a community of technical professionals, supporting the
development and dissemination of
research, and advancing humanity
through our work.
We are an international organization with global reach. IEEE seeks to
ensure that voices from across our
membership are represented in all
of our activities, while at the same
time connecting across and beyond
national boundaries. Our efforts are
always focused on advancing technology and supporting and protecting our members globally. That is
my commitment to you.
Please share your thoughts with
me at
IEEE president and CEO


inclusion, and ethical
behavior mean in a global
organization? IEEE is making a
concerted effort to address this
question with a new ad hoc
committee appointed by the IEEE
Board of Directors. On pages TI-8
and 9, the committee's chair talks
about the group's plans.
An IEEE survey [page TI-10] shows
that female technologists still face
significant discrimination in the
workplace and emphasizes the
importance of the committee's work.
Katherine Johnson was able to
succeed despite the challenges she
faced in her career [pages TI-12 and
13]. Johnson, a "human computer,"
was one of the first female AfricanAmerican mathematicians at NASA.
Her orbital-mechanics calculations
were critical to the success of
Friendship 7 and several other
U.S. human spaceflights. IEEE
honored her this year with its
President's Award.
These and other efforts could go
a long way in making "One IEEE."

editor in chief of The Institute


SEP 2019



The Institute - September 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Institute - September 2019

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