Research with possible military applications (dual-use)

Ghent University does not participate in the development of technology that is exclusively aimed at military combat operations.

However, sometimes research may contribute to both civil and military developments. For example, research on carbon fibers is useful when producing wind turbine blades, medical implants and bicycle helmets, but is also useful when developing military drones. Likewise, encryption software is useful to prevent data theft, but can also be used in a military context.

Considering the benefits at the civil level, ‘dual-use’ research may be conducted at Ghent University, on certain conditions. For example, there is no cooperation with particular weapon manufacturers and military companies, and much depends on the objectives of the research, following the human rights policy of Ghent University. For example, Ghent University does not endorse collaborations with companies that produce cluster bombs.

To limit the risk of proliferation, (the results of) dual-use goods, software and technology cannot be shared with certain countries, entities or individuals, in accordance with the obligations imposed by the Flemish government.

Ghent University has developed practical guidelines for researchers involved in dual-use research.