Margaret Clark

Professor of Psychology, is considered one of the world’s leading experts on personal relationships. She conducts research on how romantic relationships and friendships unfold over time and the reciprocal influences between such relationships and cognition, emotion, behavior, and personality.

The Yale professor directs the Clark Relationship Science Laboratory in the Department of Psychology. Her recent research investigated how expressing negative emotions can promote relationships, how optimal relationship-maintenance behaviors change over the course of a relationship, why low self-esteem undermines relationships, and how sharing activities intensifies sensory experiences.

Clark earned her Ph.D. at the University of Maryland in 1977. She taught at Carnegie Mellon University for 28 years before joining the Yale faculty in 2005. In addition to her academic appointments, she also serves as master of Trumbull College.

In 2015 Clark was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, one of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies. Her other honors include the 2014 Distinguished Career Award from the International Association of Relationship Research (IARR). In 1990 she received the IARR’s Berscheid-Hatfield Mid-Career Award, the precursor to the Distinguished Career Award.

The author of numerous peer-reviewed publications, Clark has served as a senior editor for Psychological Science, the editor of the Review of Personality and Social Psychology, and associate editor for Emotion and Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. She is the current president of the Society of Experimental Social Psychology and a past president of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. She is an adviser to the Swiss National Science Foundation and The New School of Psychology, Herzlyia and has served on grant panels for United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institute of Mental Health.