The National Drug Research Institute (NDRI), originally known as the National Centre for Research into Prevention of Drug Abuse, was established in 1986 as one of two Centres of Excellence in drug research by the National Campaign Against Drug Abuse (now known as the National Drug Strategy).
The organisation was awarded Research Institute status by Curtin University in September 1999, in recognition of its growing reputation and size.
NDRI contributes to the overall aim of the National Drug Strategy, which is to minimise the harm associated with drug use. It does so by undertaking research designed to establish the preventive potential of a number of interventions: legislative, fiscal, regulatory and educational.
NDRI's research complements the work of its sister organisations: the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC), which focuses primarily on treatment research; and the National Centre for Education and Training on Addiction (NCETA).
Core funding is provided by the Australian Government Department for Health and Ageing under the National Drug Strategy, with additional research funding coming from a range of national and international sources.