It’s not just about asking the right questions the right way. It’s also ensuring the answers you get to those questions are accurate and reliable. Patinkin Research Strategies is on the cutting edge of today’s research technology, providing survey methodologies tailored to meeting your project’s goals.

One of the keys to accurate polling in the 21st Century is adjusting methodology as communications technology and personal habits change. That’s why we take extra steps to include cell phones, and more importantly, members of cell phone only households. We’ve adjusted our quotas as more and more households drop landlines in favor of cell phones. This approach, developed by Patinkin, has resulted in highly dependable results, rated in 2012 as some of the most accurate the country.

We’re with you every step of the way during the polling process. We collaborate with you and your team, making sure we’re asking the right questions. We’ll get the answers and information you need to make the right strategic and tactical decisions.

In addition to the raw data produced by your survey, we incorporate analytical techniques (such as regression modeling and cluster analysis) to help find data convergence, keying in on the right message, phrase or value that drives support (or opposition) to your stated goal and then use that information to develop a winning strategic frame for your effort.

Focus Groups

Whether through traditional in-person focus groups, elite one-on-one interviews, or three-day online focus groups, Patinkin Research Strategies has extensive experience helping clients understand the underlying concerns and priorities that drive audience opinion. We use participants’ own words and values to help uncover a richer tapestry of ideas and attitudes that are not typically apparent with the more structured telephone survey.

However, qualitative research can also be used well after quantitative research to help refine the tone and content of materials. Testing close to finished advertising and mail through online QualBoards that include useful tools like heat mapping can literally make the difference between a win and a loss. We especially appreciate how online groups help our clients better understand tone and accommodate important nuances about our paid media that would otherwise have gone unnoticed by the campaign team.

Patinkin Research Strategies helps you determine the type of participants to include in the focus group and writes the focus group moderator’s guide, collaborating with you and your team throughout.  

Dial Tests and Online Ad Testing

In person and online dial testing is an indispensable part of today’s campaign environment. Tone and content matter. Focus groups and polling can help point you in the right direction, but testing an almost-finished advertising campaign can make the difference between a win and a loss. Tracking how respondents through every second of an ad and layering that research with quantitative and qualitative questioning gives Patinkin Research Strategies the edge to help you perfect your advertising.

After the research is completed

Your relationship with Patinkin Research Strategies doesn’t end once the final analysis has been handed over.  Not only are Patinkin Research Strategies prices both reasonable and affordable, they also pay for ongoing strategic consultation and advice throughout the course of your campaign. We want to be involved every step of the way, using our research data to weigh in on mail, TV, press releases and any other outreach materials. We view ourselves as the “message police” for your project and we take this role very seriously.

About PRS

Patinkin Research Strategies (PRS) is a premier public opinion research and strategic consulting firm. PRS brings over a decade of experience, providing high quality, accurate data and actionable strategic advice to clients across the country. Our extensive experience includes all facets of the research process. From qualitative and quantitative research design and data analysis to online surveys, web-testing ads, weighing in on IVR studies, and micro-targeting, we do it all.


Principal Ben Patinkin founded PRS with two goals in mind: accuracy and commitment to his clients. Our firm’s methods have been rated as some of the most accurate in the country.  We deliberately keep our client roster small so that we can ensure each and every project gets our full and undivided attention. We take pride in helping you find the answers you need to get the win.



Phone: (503) 305-5166

Our team

Ben Patinkin

Ben Patinkin has over a decade of experience providing opinion research and strategic consulting for candidates, municipalities, labor unions, issue advocacy campaigns, local businesses, and nonprofits.  

Ben holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Lewis & Clark College. He’s also a graduate of the Riva Training Institute, the premier focus group training and moderation institute in the country. Ben has since conducted scores of focus groups and hundreds of polls across the country.

Before starting Patinkin Research Strategies, Ben worked as a senior analyst at the nationally recognized polling firm Grove Insight. While with Grove, he worked as one of the lead strategists on numerous local and statewide candidate and ballot measure campaigns, helping to build one of the best win-loss records in the country.   

Ben and his wife Sara live in Portland, Oregon with their children Flynn and Anna.  An avid skier, outdoor enthusiast and wine snob, Ben spends as much of his free time as possible enjoying the great quality of life that Oregon has to offer.    

Maggie Simich

Maggie Simich, an analyst at Patinkin Research Strategies, has conducted research and strategic consultation for progressive causes and non-profits. Maggie has worked on protecting voting rights in Montana, electing state legislators in Oregon and Washington, and passing bond measures for school districts and municipalities across the West.

A graduate of Lewis and Clark College, Maggie has dedicated her time to progressive causes. She has volunteered for Planned Parenthood in both the administrative and political arm of the organization. A staunch believer in the importance of early childhood education, Maggie has also worked as a classroom volunteer for the Head Start program.

Maggie spends her spare time delighting in all of the great things Portland, and Oregon has to offer. An avid foodie, Maggie especially enjoys access to Portland’s highly acclaimed avant-garde restaurant scene, and traveling to beautiful Central Oregon where she spends quality time with friends and family in the high mountain desert.

Success stories



Since 2014 Patinkin Research Strategies has helped pass over $1.9 billion dollars in general obligation bonds for local jurisdictions and has passed numerous operating levies that help support local government services and programs.  Over the past three years, our small firm has accumulated a strong 10-1 track record on these vitally important local campaigns.  Some of our more recent successes include:

Portland Public Schools


In the Spring of 2017 Portland Public Schools embarked on the second phase of its bond development project.  This bond, the largest in Oregon history, sought $790 million in funds to repair or replace three high schools and one middle school and to address a back log of needed repairs—including $324 million worth of fixes to lead infused drinking water pipes.  Despite an ongoing scandal regarding lead in drinking water and other issues, we were able to outline the message framework needed to achieve passage of this bond with 66% support on Election Day.

Gresham-Barlow School District

In 2016 the Gresham-Barlow School District reached out to Patinkin Research Strategies to help pass a bond raising $219 million dollars to increase student safety, make critical repairs to school facilities, and reduce overcrowding in the district.  The district faced an uphill battle, as the bond was 100% new money – not a renewal – and the district had not passed a bond in 16 years, even rejecting a similar size bond by a 23-point margin (63% to 37%) in 2013. Our work provided the school district with the strong ballot language, winning message and targeting advice it needed to make this dream a reality, passing its bond in November, 2016.



In late 2015 we began developing a ballot measure which would phase in a $13.50 minimum wage by 2020 and guarantee access to paid sick leave in Washington State. The research plan consisted of multiple phases, starting with testing all of the potential building blocks of the initiative, then testing our proposal against a potential $12 spoiler initiative that was being proposed by our opponents, and a third phase of research helping us refine ballot language.

Our fourth and final phase of research consisted of a baseline survey that developed the message frame for our statewide persuasion campaign. Our message was simple and to the point – “Initiative 1433: it’s good for families, good for business, good for our economy.” And it worked. On Election Day in November, 2016, Initiative 1433 passed with 57% of the vote.


In early 2017 Patinkin Research Strategies conducted research on behalf of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with the goal of developing effective messaging for target audiences of The Road Map Project – a collective effort in South Seattle and South King County to keep at-risk students on track, both in and out of school. The Gates Foundation wanted to explore perceptions of this effort both among communities impacted by their work and potential supporters from surrounding communities.

As a result, we crafted a research plan that started with two online focus groups. The first focus group was conducted among South King County Road Map Region parents with an emphasis on recruiting from communities of color, residents with an associate’s degree or less and first generation immigrants. The second focus group was conducted among North Seattle civically engaged parents with an emphasis on recruitment from those with a four-year degree or higher. These groups allowed us to assess opinions of the Gates Foundation, awareness of its work in local communities and schools, and test support and opposition to specific policies – while also developing and refining messaging in support of the Road Map Plan. We then followed up our qualitative research with a statistically significant telephone survey in King County. In order to dig deeper into perceptions among parents and South King County residents we also conducted two oversamples among these target audiences. The survey was designed to refine and test top tier policy proposals and messaging identified from the focus groups.


PRS serves as one of the two in-house pollsters working on behalf of the Center for Secure Modern Elections.  The organization’s mission is one we are excited to be a part of, mainly taking the offensive in the voting rights debate and securing automatic voter registration (AVR) for every eligible citizen, beginning in key states across the country.

Automatic Voter Registration.jpg

Our research on behalf of this organization started with online focus groups across the nation among center-right voters and African Americans.  Once out of the field with the qualitative phase of the research project, PRS embarked on the quantitative phase of research, exploring the strength of proposed AVR ballot initiatives and policy proposals in various states.  Alaska proved to be a fruitful place to kick-off this effort.  

The message in Alaska was simple and to the point, emphasizing that with a small technical update, big values oriented change will ensue – allowing every eligible citizen to have their voice heard while streamlining government and creating cost-savings that can be reinvested in elections security.  Our messaging worked with AVR ultimately passing with 65% of the vote in the November, 2016 election.


Patinkin Research Strategies worked with New Direction PAC in 2014 and 2016 to help protect the Democratic majority in the State House, and take back the State Senate.  Incremental gains in both cycles resulted in a padding of our lead in the State House and the near capture of the State Senate majority.  

This past cycle our work included 11 baseline polls in swing districts across the state and numerous follow-up live tracking surveys in key battlegrounds.   Our work helped guide decision making, resource allocation and message strategy.  The end result: we maintained our lead in the State House and picked up a seat in the State Senate—bringing Democrats within one seat of the majority.


In 2015 Patinkin Research Strategies conducted research on behalf of The Oregon Home Care Commission with the goal of developing a marketing plan for a first-of-its-kind online home care registry. The research program included an online survey among home care brokers and potential consumers, assessing initial reactions to the program. We then conducted two online focus groups – one among brokers and one among consumers – further exploring perceptions of in-home care, the quality of options available across Oregon, and interest in the new Homecare Choice Program.