Stanford SPARQ

  • CA

About Us

Stanford SPARQ is a "do tank" in Stanford's Department of Psychology. Our mission is to create and share social psychological insights with people working to improve society.


What We Do:

Stanford SPARQ, the Center for Social Psychological Answers to Real-World Questions, is a center in the Social Psychology Area of the Stanford University Department of Psychology. Founded by the late social psychologist Nalini Ambady in 2012, SPARQ is not just a think tank. Instead, SPARQ is a “do tank” that partners with practitioners in government, business, and nonprofits to craft solutions to our communities’ most pressing problems.

  • Special Projects that bring together practitioner organizations and Stanford researchers to solve social problems
  • Research Clinics that covene practitioners and researchers in 2-hour forums
  • Training (including the SPARQshop) for undergraduate and graduate students in how to bridge psychological theory and real-world practice
  • An online, practitioner-focused Solutions Catalog that presents scientifically tested fixes to social problems
Action AreasMission 

Create and share social psychological insights with people working to improve society.


A world where people understand their behaviors both reflect and reinforce their environments, and where people use this understanding to promote justice, peace, and wellbeing.

  • Help practitioners apply social psychology’s theories, methods, and findings in their work
  • Improve social psychological theories and methods by applying them to real-world issues
  • Train a new generation of social psychologists who bridge basic and applied research
  • Work with media to identify and explain the social psychological forces driving this century’s most pressing problems
  • Compassion
  • Empiricism
  • Inclusion
  • Optimism
  • Practice-driven theory, and
  • Theory-driven practice.