The Systems & Pschosocial Advances Research Center (SPARC) conducts research to enhance services, improve the quality of life, and promote recovery for people with behavioral health conditions. SPARC, previously the Center for Mental Health Services Research, was created in 1993 when it was designated a Center of Excellence for Psychosocial and Systems Research by the Massachusetts Department of Mental Health (DMH). DMH has a second Center of Excellence at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center-Harvard – the Commonwealth Research Center – that focuses on neurobiology and psychopharmacology research.
Our mission mirrors DMH's commitment to collaborating with other state agencies, consumers, families, advocates, providers, and communities. We strive for the broadest possible dissemination of our research with the goal of informing all stakeholders as to the state of the science. DMH and SPARC are aligned in their vision of promoting mental health through early intervention, treatment, education, policy and regulation to provide opportunities for citizens of the Commonwealth to live full and productive lives.
Our Center has internationally recognized expertise in program development, services research, quantitative and qualitative research methods, forensic/legal and human rights issues, child and family mental health issues, transitional youth, and co-occurring disorders.