The mission of the Pacific Drug Policy Initiative is to prepare the way for creation of a future organization, tentatively named the Pacific Drug Policy Institute. The Institute is intended to be a nonprofit corporation. Its role will be to improve the quality of information available to the media, the general public, and the institutions of public policy formation through a program of social science research and education relating to drug/crime epidemic, its social dynamics and effects, and the means and measure available for the epidemic's control. The Institute will pursue its mission by expediting the cooperation of researchers, scholars and practitioners in developing a new interdisciplinary field of drug/crime studies.
Specifically, the Institute is to:
- Conduct and fund research on a broad range of topics relating to drug/crime epidemic and its control,
- Publish monograms on research findings,
- Publish a Journal of Drug/Crime Studies,
- Conduct conferences and seminars,
Manage the dissemination of the Institute's social science information
The Institute will not be an advocacy organization; It will embrace no dogma: It will have no legislative agenda. Pursuant to its mission, the Institute will seek scientists as members of its board of directors, its council of technical advisors and its editorial board.
The research and educational work of the Institute will rest upon specific
theoretical foundations. The elements of the theoretical foundations are
products of empirical investigation. As is the case in all science, the
Institute's theoretical foundations are subject to further test, confirmation,
modification, or dismissal. Fundamental to the Institute research work is the
theory of drug/crime epidemic. A further guide to
the research of the Institute is
the theory of market interposition. This theory relates to the means available to society for control of drug/crime epidemic. Market Interposition theory is predicated on:
- the theory of drug/crime epidemic,
- the historic experience of harm reduction measures and their effects, and
- the historic experience of state monopoly systems used as deterrents to drug use and drug commerce.
Specifically, the theory of market interposition is that the drug crime epidemic may be controlled by public policy measures, the combined effect of which is to reduce or eliminate the mutual stimulation between the demand and supply sides of the drug market, which is to say, by reducing or eliminating opportunity for private commercial profit from the production and distribution of a harmful substance. The instrumentality for eliminating profit opportunity is typically a public health agency authorized to serve the drug-related needs of addicts and recreational drug users. Alternatives for the design of such institutions, the scope of their authority, their direction, management, control and performance evaluation are all within the range of the Institute's interest.
The final element of the theoretical basis of the Institute is the conversion hypothesis, the product of an ongoing
attempt to forecast the quickest and least costly route to policy change. The
conversion hypothesis is predicated on historical precedent and the standard
model from political science of the role of issues in American politics. The
identification and analysis of constituencies and governmental units and their
role performance in the process of
policy formation are consequently included in the Institute's field of study.
The Institute's information product will be equally available to all interested parties: to the general public, both directly and through the media, to organized groups, to constituencies, political parties, and candidates for public office--all on an equal basis and without discrimination.