Samuel S.-H. Wang

Professor of Molecular Biology and the Princeton Neuroscience Institute

Affiliated Faculty

 Princeton Neuroscience Institute, Room A55

 Curriculum Vitae




Wang is professor of molecular biology and neuroscience at Princeton University. His work focuses on the neurobiology of learning, at levels ranging from single synapses to the whole brain. Dr. Wang’s research places special emphasis on the cerebellum, a brain region generally associated with the coordination of muscle movements. He is particularly curious about the cerebellum’s role in cognition and social thought processes, and he is using neural imaging of this part of the brain to search for clues to the causes of autism, a major concern of his laboratory.

An alumnus of the California Institute of Technology, where he received a B.S. with honor in physics, Dr. Wang went on to earn a Ph.D. in neuroscience from the Stanford University School of Medicine in 1994. He conducted postdoctoral research at Duke University Medical Center and then Bell Labs Lucent Technologies. In the mid-1990s, he also worked on science and education policy for the U.S. Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources. Dr. Wang joined the Princeton University faculty in 2000.

The recipient of a 2004 National Science Foundation Young Investigator Award, Dr. Wang has also been an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow and a W.M. Keck Foundation Distinguished Young Investigator. Last year, he received a McKnight Technological Innovations in Neuroscience Award.

Dr. Wang is also noted for developing statistical methods to analyze U.S. presidential election polls with unusually high accuracy. His research has been featured by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and National Public Radio.

Dr. Wang’s first book, Welcome to Your Brain: Why You Lose Your Car Keys But Never Forget How to Drive and Other Puzzles of Everyday Life, published in 2008, was named Young Adult Science Book of the Year by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 2011, he published Welcome to Your Child’s Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College, which is available in 15 international translations.


S.S.-H. Wang (2015) Origins of Presidential poll aggregation: A perspective from 2004 to 2012. International Journal of Forecasting 31:898-909. doi:10.1016/j.ijforecast.2015.01.003

Sam Wang: The great gerrymander of 2012. New York Times, February 3, 2013, page SR1. The Princeton Election Consortium, 2004-present. Probabilistic modeling and tracking of U.S. Presidential, Senate, and House elections, with analysis and commentary.

B.C. Campbell and S.S.-H. Wang (2012) Familial linkage between neuropsychiatric disorders and intellectual interests. PLoS ONE, 7(1):e30405.

X.R. Sun, A. Giovannucci, A.E. Sgro, and S.S.-H. Wang (2012) SnapShot: Optical control and imaging of brain activity. Cell,149:1650-1652.

I. Ozden, D.A. Dombeck, T.M. Hoogland, D.W. Tank, and S.S.-H. Wang (2012) Widespread state-dependent shifts in cerebellar activity in locomoting mice. PLoS ONE, 7(8):e42650.

Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang: Building children's minds, the American way. New York Times, February 19, 2012.

Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang: Welcome To Your Brain: Why You Lose Your Car Keys but Never Forget How to Drive and Other Puzzles of Everyday Life. Bloomsbury USA. In US English (March 2008), paperback, and 24 international translations. Winner of the 2009 AAAS/Subaru SB&F Prize for Excellence in Science Books.

Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang: Welcome To Your Child's Brain: How The Mind Grows From Conception To College. Bloomsbury USA. In US English (September 2011), paperback, and 15 international translations.