Vanessa Gstrein

Vanessa Gstrein

In April 2016 Vanessa Gstrein visited Canada for a two week field visit.  Fifteen interviews were conducted in Vancouver and Toronto to augment the documentary analysis undertaken for her study. She was able to speak to former politicians, bureaucrats, practitioners, researchers and advocates, as well as make some relevant site visits These interviews helped strengthen her doctoral research which explores the barriers to the replication of drug consumption rooms (DCRs). DCRs provide a safe, clean space for drug users to consume illicit drugs under medical supervision. The focus on the interviews were on the barriers to replicating this type of drug policy.  Important themes have emerged include the interactions between different levels of government, the nature of the discourse and public debate on drug issues, the role of evidence in the development of public policy and the impact of crisis as a factor in policy change.

The field visit, which was her first visit to Canada, provided an opportunity to develop contacts and networks.  In addition to the scheduled interviews, she could to meet with other academic colleagues working in the field of drug policy and addiction, and learn more of the current work being undertaken in the field.  

The funds from her award contributed significantly to her ability to undertake this research and the study will be much better supported.