The Council of the European Union has published a common position on the rules for the dissemination of research results from the specific programmes of research, technological development and demonstration of the European Community. The Commission position has been tabled for discussion at the next Council meeting on 29 September 1994. The common position sets out the following rules, while respecting pre-existing rights, for the dissemination and exploitation of knowledge resulting from the specific programmes under the Fourth Framework Programme (1994-1998): - Knowledge resulting from work undertaken directly or the cost of which is wholly supported by the Community will, in principle, be the property of the Community. - Knowledge which could be used in an industrial or commercial application will be protected in accordance with any applicable legislation or convention. - The Community and the contractors will be required to exploit the knowledge in their possession, or have it exploited, in conformity with Community interests, in particular taking account of: . The objectives of strengthening the international competitiveness of Community industry and economic and social cohesion in the Community; . The promotion of research activities deemed necessary for other Community policies; . The existence of scientific and technical cooperation agreements between the Community and non-Community states or international organizations; - Knowledge belonging to the Community should be made available to the contractors and to interested third parties established in the Community, or third countries associated with the implementation of the relevant programme through an agreement concluded with the Community. - The contractors will make the knowledge in their possession, and any information necessary for its use, available to each other and to interested third parties under contractually defined conditions, provided that the interests of the Community and the legitimate interests of the contractors are safeguarded; - The Commission will ensure that knowledge suitable for dissemination according to the contractual terms is disseminated or published either by the Commission itself or by the contractors, without any restrictions other than those imposed by the need to safeguard intellectual and industrial property rights, confidentiality or legitimate commercial interests.