Protagonist and Parenthetic Announce Merger
This partnership will bring a full suite of service and technology offerings to help clients understand, navigate, and influence the information environments that matter to their missions.
Washington, DC, August 15, 2023 – Protagonist, a recognized leader in the study and application of narratives, announced that it is joining forces with Parenthetic, a research and analysis company that pairs proven communication and behavioral sciences principles with advances in technology. Combined, Protagonist and Parenthetic will bring a full suite of service and technology offerings to help organizations understand, navigate, and influence the information environments that matter to their missions.
Organizations are increasingly interested in mastering the information spaces they inhabit, accurately gauging audience attitudes and responses, gaining insights into peers’ and competitors’ strategies, and measuring the impact of their work. Known for its Master Narratives® product line and Narrative Analytics® platform, Protagonist brings a full spectrum technology solution that provides access to global online media data, a suite of proprietary artificial intelligence / machine learning tools, and custom analytics to help customers identify, quantify, track, and monitor relevant narratives – the deep, enduring stories that animate public discourse, frame new information, and influence audience beliefs, preferences, and behaviors.
Parenthetic’s methodologically rigorous and data-driven approach to communication analysis yields foundational understanding and insights into organizations’ communication contexts. Applying this approach with Protagonist’s technical capabilities for analyzing narratives will better enable organizations to optimize messaging effectiveness. “Protagonist’s use of artificial intelligence to understand public discourse and audience beliefs, paired with Parenthetic’s communication frameworks and methodologies, will empower organizations to develop data-driven strategies that effectively shape their environments and persuade key audiences,” says Protagonist CEO, Rita Parhad.
While Narrative Analytics® was initially developed in the national security space, Protagonist has for the past five years focused on bringing its narrative analysis to commercial and foundation clients. More recently, Protagonist has reengaged with multiple US Government (USG) agencies to apply its enhanced narrative analytics capabilities to those use cases.
As a recognized expert in strategic messaging and influence throughout the USG – and especially the Department of Defense / National Security space – Parenthetic makes for an ideal partner in supporting these customers. “The USG is advancing the way it operates in the information space. Bringing our frameworks, methodologies, technology, and operational experience together will allow us to explore new areas of research, tackle even bigger challenges, and help our clients move faster,” says Parenthetic founder and CEO, Catherine Chapman.
Protagonist and Parenthetic will also continue to serve clients in the commercial and non-profit space. As Rita Parhad notes, “Like the USG, many organizations have a need to understand and navigate public conversations, to craft effective strategies that engage and persuade key audiences, and to accurately measure the results of those strategies.”
As a result of the merger, Parenthetic will operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Protagonist. CEO Rita Parhad and COO Bryan Pelley will retain those roles in the combined entity, while Catherine Chapman will become Chief Strategy Officer, while also serving as the manager of the Parenthetic subsidiary.
Protagonist is a recognized leader in the study and application of narratives, helping customers across the US Government, foundation / non-profit, and commercial space to leverage the power of narratives to achieve their missions. Protagonist’s Master Narratives® product line and Narrative Analytics® platform provide capabilities for understanding global narratives, powering an extensive, successful track record among multiple USG agencies, major foundations and the Fortune 1000.
Parenthetic’s multidisciplinary team of passionate and creative problem solvers pair new advances in technology with proven principles from communication and behavioral sciences to outpace evolving challenges in the influence and information operations space.
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