Formation of interdisciplinary research group to study the socio-ecological impacts of cannabis production


The recent legalization and regulation of cannabis production and consumption in California represent an unprecedented change in public policy that may have profound impacts on the environment and communities across the state. At this moment of change, there is a critical need for scholarship on cannabis-producing communities and their relation to the natural environment.

This Matrix Research Team will address that need by bringing together faculty, postdoctoral researchers, and graduate students from the College of Letters and Science, College of Natural Resources, and School of Law to study the socio-ecological impacts of cannabis production in California, focusing on three core areas: (1) policy and regulation, (2) environmental impacts, and (3) the social relations and agricultural practices of cannabis-producing communities. They will focus on developing intellectual exchange among team members, organizing a cannabis research and policy workshop, and developing opportunities for future funding.

“We understand that regulation affects farmers’ decisions and ultimately the environment,” they wrote in their proposal. “We also believe that scientific information on the ecological impacts of cannabis in turn influences farmer practices and regulation. By investigating the system as a whole, we aim to understand cannabis agriculture in all its complexities.”