Cannabis in the City: Developments in local cannabis regulation in Europe
TNI, March 2019
This paper examines six European countries – Belgium, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland – in order to better understand the tools being used – and the challenges faced – by municipal and regional governments calling for different cannabis policies. Although the national contexts, histories, legislation, state structures, and social contexts of these countries vary significantly, there are important lessons to be learned by comparing different approaches. This paper draws on Country Reports (published separately) which were written by researchers within each country, which offer a more detailed exploration of the respective reform efforts, as well as of the national political and policy environment.
The picture that emerges from this research is one of municipalities and regions struggling within restrictive policy frameworks. This report opens with a discussion of the combined challenges that have created the current impasse in cannabis regulation at the UN, European Union (EU), and national level. This is followed by a short introduction to the history and context of cannabis regulation and reform in each of the six countries, and some of the research findings.