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Mark Watts

Pronouns: He/Him

Senior Director of Client Services
Mark is a leading expert in the methodology and production of surveys using probability panels.

Mark is the senior director of Client Services for AmeriSpeak, NORC's breakthrough multi-client panel-based research platform. He has worked with hundreds of leading researchers in the private, academic, and government sectors to produce high-quality, probability-based surveys using the AmeriSpeak Panel. He oversees the team that fields hundreds of research projects using the AmeriSpeak and other panels, growing the size of this team more than five-fold since he joined NORC.

In addition, Mark is a go-to AmeriSpeak resource for providing clients with guidance for their sample, weighting, and questionnaire designs. Major projects that he has contributed to include AP VoteCast, Facebook Election Research Project, America in One Room, National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) Research and Development Surveys, and much more.

Mark has been involved with survey research for nearly three decades. Prior to joining NORC, he was partner and eventual sole-owner of Abacus Associates, a strategic public opinion research firm based in Northampton, Massachusetts. At Abacus, he oversaw all aspects of a wide range of survey and focus group research covering public affairs, policy development, elections, membership and market research. Mark has also served as the Associate Director of the Institute for Public Opinion Research at Florida International University.

Mark received his PhD in Political Science from the University of Minnesota. His research has been published in Public Opinion Quarterly, Public Perspective, Journal of Politics, Political Communication, Journal of Communication, Journalism and Mass Media Quarterly, and Communication Research, among others. He is a long-standing member of the American Association of Public Opinion Research.



Skidmore College


University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

Appointments & Affiliations


American Association for Public Opinion Research

Project Contributions

Time-Sharing Experiments for the Social Sciences (TESS)

Helping early-career social science researchers collect high-quality data


Northwestern University

2020 Election Research Project

Examining social media’s influence on voting in the U.S.



Research and Development Survey (RANDS)

Testing and fine-tuning survey approaches to measure American’s health more accurately


The National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention