The NIA-funded Columbia Roybal Center for Fearless Behavior Change will fund one-year pilot studies relevant to developing health behavior interventions for patients who have suffered acute medical events. Our prior research has shown that fear of recurrent events and interoceptive bias (i.e., excessive awareness of physiologic stimuli) are common in these patients and adversely influence health behaviors. Accordingly, our Center seeks to develop interventions that address these fear-associated mechanisms. Relevant study populations include, but are not limited to, patients with stroke, myocardial infarction, cardiac arrest, COPD, heart failure, respiratory failure, COVID-19, or recent diagnosis with cancer or end-stage renal disease. Relevant behavioral outcomes include, but are not limited to, medication adherence, physical activity, sleep, as well as measures of psychological distress and quality of life. The goal of the award is to help investigators obtain preliminary data to support independent grant applications to the NIH or other funders. Applicants are encouraged to follow the experimental medicine approach to intervention development promoted by the Science of Behavior Change.(link is external and opens in a new window)

Award Amount

$25,000. Investigators will also gain in-kind support from the research infrastructure at the Columbia Roybal Center.


Applicants can be post-doctoral research fellows or faculty at any rank. Applicants are not required to be affiliated with Columbia University.


Applications must be submitted by Tuesday, December 15, 2020.

Notice of Award

Awards will be announced on February 15, 2021. Funding will begin July 1, 2021.


For questions about the scientific content, please contact Ian Kronish, MD, MPH; Director, Columbia Roybal Center, at sends e-mai)
For questions about the application process and format, please contact Darlene Straussman, at sends e-mail)
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