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Michael W. Link, Ph.D.

Division Vice President, Data Science, Surveys, and Enabling Technologies

Michael W. Link, Ph.D. Michael W. Link, Ph.D.
Michael Link, Division Vice President, Data Science, Surveys, and Enabling Technologies, is a widely respected leader in the fields of survey research and data science. Link is a thought leader on the convergence of survey research, new technologies, and data science methodologies as well as a successful business executive with a deep understanding of the public and private sector aspects of the research industry.

Prior to Abt, he was chief behavioral methodologist and senior vice president of Nielsen’s Data Science Institute, a global center of innovation and research. There, he led external research collaborations, research dissemination, as well as the development of global leadership programs. He also oversaw the company’s global R&D efforts and Singapore Innovation Hub.

Link also has served as a senior behavioral methodologist and research methods team leader at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Prior to this, he was the senior survey director and methodologist at RTI International.
Link is the past-president of the American Association for Public Opinion Research, the author of numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, and has served on numerous expert advisory panels for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

Link holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in political science from the University of South Carolina and a Bachelor’s in Biology from Georgia State University.
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  • Survey and social research
  • Research Methodology
  • Data Science
  • Leadership, management

Selected Publications

  • Link, M. (2015). “Presidential Address: AAPOR2025 and the Opportunities in the Decade Before Us.” Public Opinion Quarterly. First published 8/14/15 at doi:10.1093/poq/nfv028
  • Link, M., J. Murphy, M. Schober, T. Buskirk, J. Hunter Childs, & C. Tesfaye (2014). “Mobile Technologies for Conducting, Augmenting and Potentially Replacing Surveys: Executive Summary of the AAPOR Task Force on Emerging Technologies in Public Opinion Research.” Public Opinion Quarterly, 78: 779-787.
  • Link, M. (2013). “Measuring Compliance in Mobile Longitudinal Repeated-Measures Design Study.” Survey Practice 6 (vol 4).
  • Link, M., and J. Lai. (2011). “Cell Phone-Only Households and Problems of Differential Nonresponse Using an Address Based Sampling Design.” Public Opinion Quarterly 75, 613-635.
  • Link, M., M. Battaglia, L. Osborn, M. Frankel, and A. Mokdad. (2009). “Measuring The Quality of Real- Time Telephone Survey Interpreters,” International Journal of Public Opinion Research 21, 271- 292.
  • Link, M., M. Battaglia, M. Frankel, L. Osborn, and A. Mokdad (2008). “Comparison of Address-based Sampling versus Random-Digit Dialing for General Population Surveys.” Public Opinion Quarterly 72, 6-27.
  • Link, M., and M. Kresnow. (2006). “The Future of Random-Digit Dialed (RDD) for Injury and Violence Prevention Research.” American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 31: 444-450.

Selected Awards

  • Nielsen Fellow 2015 awarded for lifetime achievement and excellence in science.
  • Warren Mitofsky 2011 Innovators Award from the American Association for Public Opinion Research for the development and promotion of Address Based Sampling methodology.
  • Department of Health and Human Services Honor Award, 2004, as member of the 2004 Influenza Vaccine Shortage Response Team, for extraordinary efforts to protect the nation’s influenza high-risk population through innovative vaccine acquisition strategies during the 2004-05 influenza season vaccine shortage.