Some breakout groups which we call Affinity Groups have decided to meet outside of the BPRG when they have an affinity for a targeted topic or area of research. Below is a description of each Affinity Group and whom to contact to get more information about them. While we support our Affinity Groups and try to create a space/platform for them to meet and communicate, they are considered separate from the BPRG.

Diversity Outreach and inclusion (DOI)

As an offshoot of the Boston Psychedelic Research Group, the Diversity, Outreach, and Inclusion Affinity Group is dedicated to advancing the field of clinical psychedelic research by developing diverse community networks, sharing perspectives, increasing technical capacity and advocating that the theory, research, and application of psychedelics as legal medicine be conducted through a social justice framework.

Contact: Mackenzie Bullard -

Contemplative Practice & Psychedelics
The Contemplative Practice & Psychedelics affinity group hosts a forum approximately every two months for exploring the intersection of contemplative practices with psychedelic research and therapy. Though primarily focused on Buddhist and Vedic-inspired practices, we are interested in any approach that is represented in contemporary psychedelic research. Each meeting is led by a facilitator (often by a group member) who suggests reading material, gives a presentation, and guides discussion focused on a specific aspect of this intersection (e.g. how self-compassion training can aid in the process of psychedelic therapy). The group is open to anyone who is interested in participating in thoughtful dialogue about how contemplative practices can inform psychedelic research and therapy, and vice versa!

Contact:  Elise Hoblitzelle -

Ketamine is an established and legal medication, and can be used for psychedelic experiences and more mild trance states that might enhance therapeutic action; and for rapid resolution of suicidal thinking. The Ketamine affinity group is comprised of therapists and physicians, many of whom have completed some training in ketamine assisted psychotherapy. The affinity group reviews practice protocols, including dose, ethics, setting, subject selection and exclusion, and psychotherapy modality; research advances; integration with other psychedelic experiences; education and supervision; and more. 

Contact: Mark Green -

Mescaline, the psychedelic often left out of the current psychedelic renaissance, has a unique set of effects on the human mind that can be ideal (in combination with therapy) for treating a variety of mental disorders. For more information, see our brief paper The Potential Benefits of Mescaline Assisted Therapy. This affinity group is for those interested in collaborating with MAPS to restart mescaline research in the 21st century, and to ultimately get mescaline approved by the FDA as a legal, prescribable drug. 

Contact: Roman Gelperin -

Investment/Philanthropy Affinity Group
The growing wave of psychedelic-assisted therapy research, commercialization, and activity presents many opportunities and considerations for investors and philanthropists. As new research centers, businesses, and organizations are being launched regularly. This affinity group serves as a community to share opportunities, learn, and parse out the signal from the noise. 

Contact: Alex Simon - 


Psychedelic-assisted therapies have been shown to be promising treatments to help relieve psychological and existential distress in patients with serious illness or at the end of life. These treatments are being studied to determine how helpful they are and to learn which modalities work best for which populations. There is hope that psychedelic-assisted therapies can improve psychosocial and existential outcomes in these patients and families.  This affinity group gathers researchers and others who are interested in this aspect of psychedelic research. 

Contacts: Yvan Beaussant - and Mackenzie Bullard - bullard@bu.ed


We are currently gathering a coalition of willing participants to help shape and bring into being a professional association to support the practitioners of the work as it becomes more broadly available.  This is separate from the effort taking place to create a credentialing board.

Contacts: Jeremy Dalnes -

The California Institute of Integral Studies has the only training program affiliated with an academic institution to become a Certified Psychedelic assisted Therapist and Researcher-CPTR. This is a great place to start if you are interested in learning about the many different modalities in this field and it is the only comprehensive course of it’s kind. This program is doubling in size in 2021 and half of their students will be Boston-based. For now, the training is virtual and we are hoping to have some in-person time next Spring. It is open to licensed medical and mental health professionals and to ordained clergy and commissioned chaplains.  See the CIIS/CPTR website to learn more.

Contact: Anne St Goar -


The Trainee Affinity group is a community for clinical trainees in the Boston area (psychiatry residents, psychology trainees, social work/therapy trainees) to share experiences, ideas, and resources for incorporating psychedelics research, education, and advocacy into their training years and practice.

Contact: Amanda Kim -