The Interdisciplinary Conference on Psychedelic Research, or ICPR, took place over this past weekend, in a virtual format necessitated Covid-19.
Organized by the Netherlands-based OPEN Foundation, the conference looks to provide a supportive and encouraging environment for psychedelic researchers and therapeutic practitioners to discuss the evolving world of psychedelics. As we work to revamp our site and our coverage, it’s Truffle Report’s privilege to bring readers the latest from the leading minds in psychedelic science.
ICPR director Joost Breeksema opened the conference last Thursday with some thoughtful remarks, likening the increasing interest in psychedelics over the past year to the life cycles of the very psilocybin fungi studied by many of his speakers and colleagues.
“It’s as if this mycelium, over the past several decades, were growing and spreading underground and has suddenly found the right conditions and reemerged into the light. Research centres, clinical trials, and even venture capital are all popping up like mushrooms left, right, and centre.”
ICPR and a Widening Psychedelic Space
Recording from Amsterdam, Breeksema adds that “psychedelic research does not take place in an academic ivory tower.” He went on to say that a substantial part of this year’s conference would be devoted to addressing the increasingly mainstream commercial aspirations of so many newcomers to psychedelic science, as well as reaffirming the importance of historical and contemporary indigenous involvement in the space.
Following Breeksema in welcoming virtual attendees was Angela Ruiz, Indigenous Track Coordinator. Ruiz began by informing ICPR attendees of the conference’s indigenous speakers and project leaders, and encouraged donations to their communities. “The amount of value and information that mondern society takes from indigenous communities and applies to modern therpaies in the context of psychedelics is significant. It is our responsibility as a society to give back to where we take so much knowledge and wisdom.” She then extended her own welcome and gave a rundown of ICPR 2020 festival logistics.
ICPR 2020 comes as the latest development in a landmark year for psychedelics across the board. Efforts towards decriminalization in major American cities, ongoing scientific research, and a growing sphere of private-sector drug development are rapidly gathering momentum.
Truffle Report looks forward to bringing readers the highlights of this unique event.
James Stephen is a content contributor at Truffle Report. He studied Politics and International Development at Trent University and completed his Postgraduate Certificate in Book, Magazine, and Electronic Publishing at Centennial College. He has previously worked as a chef, and in his spare time is an author and freelance writer.