Our Annual student idea incubator, talk competition, and conference

Distinct from traditional conferences, PsychedelX is a process.


PsychedelX is a free virtual conference, talk competition, and idea incubator open to the general public that features 15-20 minute live and pre-recorded talks from IPN members on any topic related to psychedelics. It launched in 2021 and takes place every Spring/Summer. These talks are accompanied by Q&A sessions, keynote lectures, and professional development panels. Topics last year ranged from the bidirectional influence of psychedelics on our gut microbiome to potential applications in midwifery in a post-prohibition world.

Why We Do It

After decades of stigma, psychedelics are receiving a tremendous level of media attention. During this critical period, effective communication and engagement of novel, well-informed, and diverse ideas will shape how these compounds become integrated in the modern world. History shows us these paradigm shifts are most often led by young people, especially students. However, despite them being a wellspring of creativity, curiosity, and optimism, there are few opportunities for students interested in psychedelics to develop their skills and engage their ideas with the public.

How It Works

From the beginning, each speaker is paired with a peer mentor and a talk-creation team (2-4 people) so they are always supported by one another. The PsychedelX process allows students to gain experience sharing their ideas with their peers whilst creating a lasting community and professional connections.

  1. Train and Network. Learn from interactive workshops on effective communication and storytelling while meeting other students (e.g. via Discord and social events).
  2. Peer Mentor. Receive and provide constructive feedback in small peer mentoring groups led by an experienced talk coach.
  3. Practice Presentations. Run through several rounds of practice talks before final recording where top scorers present live to the public and a panel of expert judges.
  4. Build a Lasting Cohort. Engage with your peers after the conference and stay connected to IPN through projects like this one (e.g. as a talk coach next year!)

PsychedelX is a competitive program; ranging from 60-100+ applications each year, where the top 20-30 students and/or youth were selected as speakers. This year, applications were reviewed by our Research & Professional Development Mushroom, with at least 3 gills or caps reviewing each application. Selection was based on the novelty, clarity, uniqueness, and impact of ideas. We are so proud of this year’s cohort and are thrilled to see the culmination of all their hard work in June!

Ultimately, we hope that the PsychedelX experience will inspire students to be confident in their next professional steps, whether publishing a paper on the topic of their talk, applying to graduate school, or simply sharing their story on broader platforms. Fundamentally, we believe that with a bit of encouragement and feedback, students can convey their perspectives and ideas in a way that can strengthen their sense of purpose and help make the world a better place. We anticipate that the talks shared and connections made at PsychedelX will reverberate in the psychedelics space for years to come.

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