The Vermont Center on Behavior and Health (VCBH), led by Director Stephen T. Higgins, PhD, is an interdisciplinary research center committed to investigating relationships between personal behavior patterns (i.e., lifestyle) and risk for chronic disease and premature death. Our work has historically focused on health disparities for the most vulnerable populations, particularly among the socioeconomically disadvantaged where these risk factors are overrepresented.


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Located in Burlington, VT at the University of Vermont, Larner College of Medicine, VCBH researchers have a specific focus on understanding mechanisms underpinning risk and developing effective interventions and policies to promote healthy behavior. A common thread across VCBH research projects is the application of knowledge from the disciplines of behavioral economics and behavioral pharmacology to increase understanding of vulnerability to unhealthy behavior and the use of incentives and other behavioral and pharmacological interventions to support healthy behavior change interventions and policies.

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Upcoming VCBH Events


February Lecture Series: Erin Winstanley, PhD

Visiting Professor
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
February 21, 2024
12:00-1:00 PM
Davis Auditorium, UVM Medical Center

March Lecture Series: Cancelled

Many of the VCBH's faculty and trainees will be attending the SRNT annual meeting in Scotland at this time and will not be available for this month's lecture.

Visit the Center on Rural Addiction



VCBH Career Opportunities

Predoctoral & Postdoctoral Research Fellowships. Click here for more information.

Health Care Professional needed to work with a Principal Investigator to deliver prolonged exposure (PE) therapy via telemedicine to research participants. Click here for complete job posting.


Sigmon Featured on Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business List

August 11, 2020 by Jennifer Nachbur

University of Vermont Associate Professor of Psychiatry Stacey Sigmon, Ph.D., has been selected by Fast Company for its 11th annual list of the Most Creative People in Business, which honors an influential and diverse group of leaders from a vast range of global industries including tech, design, entertainment, healthcare, media, government, nonprofit, sports, food, and more.

Stacey Sigmon, Ph.D. (Courtesy photo)

On August 4, 2020, Fast Company announced its 11th annual list of the Most Creative People in Business, honoring an influential and diverse group of leaders from a vast range of global industries including tech, design, entertainment, healthcare, media, government, nonprofit, sports, food, and more. University of Vermont Associate Professor of Psychiatry Stacey Sigmon, Ph.D., is featured on the list in the “For Designing a Superior Solution” category.

Sigmon was one of 74 individuals selected for inclusion in this year’s list, which recognizes individuals who used their innovative thinking to make an impact on the world beyond financial success. These engineers, executives, choreographers, activists, designers, journalists, and founders have created something new this year within their field that’s never been done before in their industries. Many achieved these societal problem-solving accomplishments in one of the most contentious and erratic times in history.

Fast Company recognized Sigmon for her work developing new models of opioid treatment delivery. Sigmon, whose research has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA Internal Medicine, JAMA Psychiatry, The Lancet, and other journals, has built a national reputation for developing and testing innovative treatment options to bridge the gap in treatment access for patients in rural areas, including a technological solution that includes computerized dispensers for controlled medication dosing and interactive voice response systems for providing remote support. These technology-assisted components can help get treatment to patients who need it, while also addressing providers’ concerns around possible nonadherence.

“Innovative technology strategies are one way to support and expand delivery of science-based addiction treatment,” Sigmon says. These technologies are some of the many evidence-based approaches being offered to rural providers through the Center on Rural Addiction that Sigmon leads. Funded by a Health Resources and Services Administration grant received in 2019, the center provides consultation, resources, training and technical assistance to healthcare providers in rural communities throughout Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont who treat opioid addiction. As more doctors fold telemedicine into their services in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, “technology-assisted drug treatment holds immense promise beyond the rural population.”

Introduced in 2009, the Most Creative People list was quickly established as one of Fast Company’smost esteemed franchises. Each year, the magazine’s editors present an all-new list of people chosen according to a proprietary methodology. Fast Company editors and writers spend a year researching candidates for the list, scouting every business sector: social good, medical, technology, engineering, marketing, entertainment, startups, and more. The people selected have all accomplished something truly innovative within the past 12 months or so that is having a measurable effect within their industries and beyond. They’re also discoveries—none has ever been profiled in Fast Company in print before. Together, they represent the future of business.

“Each year, we recognize artists and conventionally creative people making their mark on business and corporate executives deploying creativity and innovation to address some of the biggest challenges facing businesses and society,” says Stephanie Mehta, editor-in-chief of Fast Company. “Individually and collectively, the Most Creative People are an inspiration.

Fast Company’s 2020 Most Creative People list is featured in the September 2020 issue.

(This article was adapted from a press release produced by Fast Company.)