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Our research explores the social, economic, and health impacts of marijuana across the Commonwealth. The Research Department contributes to Legislative research reports, original science papers and presentations, and educational projects.
The Cannabis Control Commission is a trusted resource for research on the impact of cannabis legalization, regularly disseminating new insights on the effects of cannabis policies through legislative reports and scientific manuscripts, and presentations at conferences, agencies, and academic institutions.
The Commission serves as a cannabis policy research center of excellence, among the first of its kind to both inform evidence-based policy decisions and add to the scientific literature. The center of excellence brings together legislators, regulators, researchers, and other government agencies to study the implementation and effects of cannabis policies. This multidisciplinary group meets the annual research agenda outlined in G. L. c. 94G, § 17(a) and G. L. c. 94G, § 17 (b), as well as assesses other topics of interest, such as effectiveness in creating a diverse new industry and rectifying harms from marijuana prohibition and enforcement.
Topics on the Commission’s research agenda include, but are not limited to:
- Patterns of use, methods of consumption, sources of purchase and general perceptions of marijuana among minors, among college and university students and among adults;
- Incidents of impaired driving, hospitalization and use of other health care services related to marijuana use, including a report of the state of the science around identifying a quantifiable level of marijuana-induced impairment of motor vehicle operation and a report on the financial impacts on the state healthcare system of hospitalizations related to marijuana;
- Economic and fiscal impacts for state and local governments including the impact of legalization on the production and distribution of marijuana in the illicit market and the costs and benefits to state and local revenue;
- Ownership and employment trends in the marijuana industry examining participation by racial, ethnic and socioeconomic subgroups, including identification of barriers to participation in the industry;
- A market analysis examining the expansion or contraction of the illicit marketplace and the expansion or contraction of the legal marketplace, including estimates and comparisons of pricing and product availability in both markets;
- A compilation of data on the number of incidents of discipline in schools, including suspensions or expulsions, resulting from marijuana use or possession of marijuana or marijuana products; and
- A compilation of data on the number of civil penalties, arrests, prosecutions, incarcerations and sanctions imposed for violations of chapter 94C for possession, distribution or trafficking of marijuana or marijuana products, including the age, race, gender, country of origin, state geographic region and average sanctions of the persons charged.
To view the Commission’s latest research, visit our Public Documents page and select “Reports” under the “Filter Documents” dropdown menu.
Research Facility Licenses and Research Permits
Clinical and plant-based research are outside the expertise and responsibility of the Commission’s Research Department; However, the Research Department, in collaboration with the Licensing Department, assesses external Research Permits (i.e., certificate indicating Commission approval to conduct a specified research project over a specified and finite period) at a licensed Marijuana Research Facility. [See 500.050(12)]
Responsible Vendor Training Program
The Responsible Vendor Training (RVT) certification program operates within the Research Department. This program highlights the Commission’s mission to effectively implement a safe cannabis industry in the Commonwealth and belief that proper training is a critical part of a Marijuana Establishment’s success.
Marijuana Establishment Agents are required to complete RVT training to perform their job functions. Certified RVT vendors offer in-classroom, virtual classroom, and online modules, that covers all topics identified in 935 CMR 500.050(2)(b). [See 500.105(2)]
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The Cannabis Control Commission conducts meetings and other events to keep you informed.
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Sign up for updates from the Cannabis Control Commission.