Interdisciplinary Conference on Psychedelic Research 2020

Friday, September 25th through Sunday, September 27th

A global virtual conference of leading experts in psychedelic research and therapy, psychiatry, neuroscience, psychology and anthropology!

Panel takes place on Friday September 25th from 11:35am – 12:15pm PDT

The Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines is a proud Gold Sponsor of this conference!

As a sponsor, we have a special discount of €25 for the Chacruna community. Just type the code “Chacruna25!” in the Discount Coupon section.

Panel: Diversity, Equity and Access in Psychedelic Medicine, co-sponsored by the Chacruna Institute

The field of psychedelic science struggles with many of the same social issues that plague society at large. While indigenous cultures around the world have used plant medicines for millennia, their voices are largely excluded from the contemporary conversation. Historically, women have made significant contributions to the field, but their work has often been ignored or overshadowed by that of men. Few people of color are being included in the research studies, and rarely have the resources to seek out psychedelic treatment. And many do not know about the history of psychedelics being used as “conversation therapies” to attempt treat LGBTQ people, as well as other homophobic and heteronormative trends in psychedelic science. In this critical cultural moment when issues of oppression and inequality are so present in our cultural awareness, it is more urgent than ever to include diverse voices in the psychedelic science and culture, and work to ensure equity, access and inclusion so that all people can benefit from this work. This panel features a diverse group of important thought leaders from Chacruna who are at the cutting-edge of inclusivity advocacy in the psychedelic community. They will share their valuable wisdom and experience in this field, and offer insights around the critical question of how to help make psychedelic healing an accessible option for all those in need.


Alex Belser, Ph.D, is a licensed psychologist and psychedelic researcher at Yale University.  He is the founding President of Nautilus Sanctuary, the first non-profit center for psychedelic medicine on the east coast. He serves as the Chief Clinical Officer of Adelia Therapeutics, a drug discovery platform for the development of proprietary tryptamine-based therapeutics. For the last 20 years, Alex has been active in the psychedelic research community, having conducted multiple clinical trials exploring psilocybin and MDMA as treatments for depression, anxiety, cancer-related distress, obsessive-compulsive disorder, addiction, and trauma.  At Yale, Alex is the Co-Investigator of a study investigating the neural correlates of the effects of psilocybin as a treatment for OCD and is investigating psilocybin-induced neuroplasticity in the treatment of major depression. With MAPS, Alex is a therapist on studies of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for the treatment of severe PTSD. He is  also part of the Chacruna Institute’s Women, Gender Diversity, and Sexual Minorities Working Group, where he works on issues affecting LGBTQI+ people. Alex completed his training in psychology at Bellevue Hospital, Mount Sinai Beth Israel Hospital, and New York Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University Medical Center.  He is a graduate of Georgetown University, New York University, and the University of Cambridge. His writing is available at, and his private practice site is

NiCole T. Buchanan, Ph.D. is a Professor of Psychology at Michigan State University and Clinical Director and Founder of Alliance Psychological Associates, PLLC in East Lansing, MI. She is a member of Chacruna’s Racial Equity and Access Committee and a trainee in the MAPS MDMA-assisted psychotherapy training for communities of color and anticipates offering MDMA-assisted psychotherapy when clinical trials are completed. Dr. Buchanan is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, four separate divisions of the American Psychological Association, and has received numerous national and international awards for her research, teaching, clinical work, and professional service. She is an accomplished speaker, writer, and scholar with more than 70 journal articles, book chapters, and research reports, and her work has been highlighted in hundreds of media outlets, including CBS News, the Huffington Post, and Essence Magazine, and she has been a featured speaker for several programs, including TEDx and National Public Radio (NPR).

Beatriz Caiuby Labate, Ph.D. (Bia Labate) is a queer Brazilian anthropologist. She has a Ph.D. in social anthropology from the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Brazil. Her main areas of interest are the study of plant medicines, drug policy, shamanism, ritual, and religion. She is Executive Director of the Chacruna Institute for Psychedelic Plant Medicines ( She is Adjunct Faculty at the East-West Psychology Program at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) in San Francisco. She is also Public Education and Culture Specialist at the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS). She is co-founder of the Interdisciplinary Group for Psychoactive Studies (NEIP) in Brazil, and editor of NEIP’s website (, as well as editor of the Mexican blog Chacruna Latinoamérica ( She is author, co-author, and co-editor of twenty-one books, two special-edition journals, and several peer-reviewed articles (

Monnica T. Williams, Ph.D., ABPP, is a board-certified licensed clinical psychologist and Associate Professor at the University of Connecticut in the Department of Psychological Sciences and Department of Psychiatry. She is also Clinical Director of the Behavioral Wellness Clinic, where she provides supervision and training to clinicians for empirically-supported treatments. Prior to her move to Connecticut in 2016, Dr. Williams served as the Director of the Center for Mental Health Disparities at the University of Louisville in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences. Dr. Williams’ research focuses on African American mental health, culture, and psychopathology, and she has published over 100 scientific articles on these topics. Current projects include the assessment of race-based trauma, unacceptable thoughts in OCD, improving cultural competence in the delivery of mental health care services, and interventions to reduce racism. This includes her work as a PI in a multisite study of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD. She also gives diversity trainings nationally for clinical psychology programs, scientific conferences, and community organizations. Dr. Williams is a member of Chacruna’s Racial Equity and Access Committee.

Chacruna Board Member Daniela Peluso, Ph.D. will also be presenting at this conference. Her presentation is titled: The emergence of global ayahuasca: from local entrepreneurship to an industry – with reflections on commodification. Learn more here.

Buy tickets here.
Use the code: “Chacruna25!” for €25 off

ICPR offers scholarships for participants from emerging economies (see this list): Please email [email protected] to apply for a scholarship ticket.

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