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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Committee on Law and Justice
Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education

Workshop for Understanding the Demand for Illegal Drugs 

 

Project Scope

An ad hoc committee will conduct a workshop-based study that will identify and describe what is known about the nature and scope of the illegal drug market. It will include an examination of market operations and will attempt to describe unique features of illegal markets that specialize in various popular drugs such as cocaine, ecstasy, and marijuana. It will investigate the characteristics of illegal drug users, particularly focusing on the youth market, long term users, and heavy users. The workshop agenda will also include discussion of further work to explore the research issues associated with illegal drug demand, to develop a research agenda to learn more about what drives demand in the United States, and to identify evidence-based prevention strategies.

 

Sponsor
National Institute of Justice
 

Committee Membership
PETER REUTER (Chair), School of Public Policy and Department of Criminology, University of Maryland
JAMES C. ANTHONY, Department of Epidemiology, Michigan State University College of Human Medicine
RICHARD J. BONNIE, Institute of Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy, University of Virginia
DONALD KENKEL,Department of Policy Analysis and Management, Cornell University
TERRIE E. MOFFITT, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, Duke University
HAROLD POLLACK, School of Social Service Administration, University of Chicago
MAXINE L. STITZER, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
 

Staff
CAROL PETRIE, Study Director
LINDA DePUGH, Administrative Assistant
BARBARA BOYD, Administrative Associate 

 
Understanding the Demand for Illegal Drugs (2010)
   

 Understanding the Demand for Illegal Drugs - cover

 

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Despite efforts to reduce drug consumption in the United States over the past 35 years, drugs are just as cheap and available as they have ever been. Cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamines continue to cause great harm in the country, particularly in minority communities in the major cities. Marijuana use remains a part of adolescent development for about half of the country's young people, although there is controversy about the extent of its harm.

  

Given the persistence of drug demand in the face of lengthy and expensive efforts to control the markets, the National Institute of Justice asked the National Research Council to undertake a study of current research on the demand for drugs in order to help better focus national efforts to reduce that demand.

This study complements the 2003 book, Informing America's Policy on Illegal Drugs by giving more attention to the sources of demand and assessing the potential of demand-side interventions to make a substantial difference to the nation's drug problems. Understanding the Demand for Illegal Drugs therefore focuses tightly on demand models in the field of economics and evaluates the data needs for advancing this relatively undeveloped area of investigation.

 

 

 

   
   

 


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