UHealth - University of Miami Health System

José Szapocznik, Ph.D.

General Information

José  Szapocznik, Ph.D.


  • .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)


  • English
  • Spanish


  • Co-Director, Florida Node Alliance, National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network
  • Honorary Founding Director, Miami Clinical Translational Science Institute
  • Professor of Architecture, Psychology, and Counseling Psychology & Educational Research
  • Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences


Research Interests

• Public Health
• Built Environment, social processes, behavior (physical activity) and health outcomes (obesity)
• Family-based interventions
• Hispanic families
• Adolescent drug abuse and related problems


1977 Ph.D.
University of Miami
1973 M.S.
University of Miami
1969 B.A.
University of Miami



José Szapocznik, Ph.D. has received over $120 million in NIH funding.  With over 270 scholarly publications, he is Chair Emeritus of the Department of Public Health Sciences, Director of the Center for Family Studies, and Honorary Founding Director of the University of Miami-based Miami Clinical Translational Science Institute. Szapocznik has a profound interest in the role of context in development, behavior and health outcomes, dedicating his career to studying culture, family, neighborhood and the built environments as important contexts influencing minority populations. He pioneered the national effort to prevent and treat adolescent drug abuse and related behavior problems in Hispanic youth, developing and testing family-based, evidence-based approaches.  He has also been a pioneer in the young field of the relationship between the human built environment and health outcomes, establishing a broadly interdisciplinary, university-wide team.  

As PI of one of 13 NIDA-funded Nodes of the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN), he has been a leader in the national initiative to translate effective drug abuse treatments into clinical practice by engaging the Network's medical, community primary care and specialty drug treatment sites in conducting randomized clinical trials.  Szapocznik has held a number of policy advisory roles including membership in the NIH National Advisory Councils for  NIMH, NIDA, NIMHD, and the SAMSHA Center for Substance Abuse Prevention; and was a founding member and the first behavioral scientist to be appointed to the NIH-wide AIDS Program Advisory Committee (now the National Advisory Council for the NIH Office of AIDS).  He served on Search Committees for the Directors of the FDA, NIMH, NIDA (3 times), and both SAMSHA Centers for Substance Abuse Treatment and Prevention.  Szapocznik is the Founding Chair, and chair for its first decade, of the National Hispanic Science Network on Drug Abuse. Szapocznik has mentored a large cadre of minority graduate students and junior faculty who are now in academic leadership roles.