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Rosalie Liccardo Pacula

Professor of Health Policy & Management, USC Sol Price School of Public Policy & Senior Fellow, Leonard D Schaeffer Center for Health Policy & Economics, University of Southern California

Rosalie Liccardo Pacula PhD is a Full Professor and the Elizabeth Garrett Chair in Health Policy, Economics & Law in the Sol Price School of Public Policy and the Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy & Economics at the University of Southern California. She also serves as Co-PI of the NIH P50 funded RAND/USC Opioid Policy Tools and Information Center of Excellence (OPTIC) and is the Co-Director of USC’s Institute on Addiction Sciences Policy Affinity Group. Prior to coming to USC, she spent 15 years as the Co-Director of RAND’s Drug Policy Research Center, which provided her the opportunity to educate and engage with policy makers at the state, federal and international level on policies related to alcohol, cannabis, opioids among others.

Her research focuses on issues related to illegal or imperfect markets (health care markets, insurance markets, markets for addictive goods), the measurement of these markets, and the impact of policies on the behavior of actors in these markets. She has applied much of this knowledge to study addiction, addiction policy, and how the health care system delivers and finances treatment for addiction services. She was the lead investigator of several NIH studies examining the impact of cannabis liberalization policies (decriminalization, medicalization and legalization), and is currently conducting NIH funded work evaluating the impact of cannabis liberalization policies and markets on alcohol and opioids use and harm, assessments of opioid policies on opioid related harm and misuse, the development of improved data and methods for assessing the opioid crisis, the policies targeting it, and its short and long term effects on communities, and the development of a microsimulation model to assess the impact of alcohol policies on alcohol-related health disparities.

Dr. Pacula sits on numerous editorial boards, including the International Journal of Drug Policy and the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis, and serves as an Assistant Editor for Addiction. She currently serves as a Technical Expert to the World Health Organization on the Public Health Effects of Cannabis Liberalization Policies and is the current President of the International Society for the Study of Drug Policy (ISSDP).

Dr. Pacula’s work has been published in top economics, medical, health services, and addiction journals, including JAMA, JAMA Internal Medicine, JAMA Pediatrics, The Lancet- Psychiatry, Health Affairs, Addiction, American Economic Review, Review of Economics and Statistics, Journal of Health Economics, and American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, as well as being featured in national news outlets, including US News & World Report, Newsweek, Vox, Congressional Quarterly News, NBC News, National Journal, and Mother Jones.


  • 2019–present
    Profesor, University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy
  • 2019–present
    Senior Fellow, Schaeffer Center for Health Policy & Economics
  • 1997–present
    Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research


Technical Expert on Public Health Impacts of Cannabis, World Health Organization; President of the International Society for the Study of Drug Policy