The Complex Business of Marijuana: An Interdisciplinary Examination of the Consequences and Benefits of Legalization

UNCP Author/Contributor (non-UNCP co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Jeremy M. Deck (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP )
Web Site:
Mohammad Ashraf

Abstract: This research explores the potential unknown and unintended consequences of the United States' legalization of cannabis, or marijuana, and considers the impact through an integration of business and social science principles. Furthermore, the potential impacts are derived from an analysis of consumer behavior with respect to drug use, market supply and demand factors, and the pricing strategies employed by both domestic and international drug suppliers. This research studies the effect of legalization on tax policy, society, organizational structure of drug terror organizations (DTO), and the resulting potential DTO actions in Mexico. This research attempted to determine whether legalization of drugs force illegal businesses into legal business through an understanding of the similarities and differences between legal and illegal business. Illegal drug organizations share many more similarities with legal businesses than first assumed at the start of this research. However, this analysis suggests an illegal drug business differs from legal businesses in three distinct ways: (1) a highly decentralized organizational structure characterized by strong social or familial relationships; (2) significant barriers to exit exist resulting from a carefree lavish lifestyle or the perception of physical harm; and, not surprisingly, (3) the application of violence in the conduct of business. While there are similarities, the differences between legal and illegal business combined with emerging drug market evolution trends suggest illegal businesses diversify and innovate to compete, but may do so in creative and undesirable ways.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2015
Legalization of Marijuana, Cannabis, Marijuana, Consumer Behavior, Pricing Strategy, International Drug Supplies, Domestic Drug Suppliers, Illegal Drug Business\

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