Advancing the Value of Ethnography

Announcing the EPIC Equity Council & Cohort Program


Ethnographers are powerful change makers in business, organizations, and communities because we understand people within complex social and cultural contexts. In ethnography, “reflexivity” is the rigorous practice of understanding ourselves in the same way.

We know that power and inequities shape our work and professional communities, and EPIC members have continually challenged each other and our organization to address them.

Last summer, one of our members surprised us with a $10,000 donation offered as a direct investment in equity. Inspired by this gift and many efforts of our members over the years, we created the EPIC Equity Council with the goals of advancing equity within our community and creating ​collaborative ​space​s​ for EPIC people to ​embed equity within their work.

We are excited to announce the Equity Council’s first program, Becoming EPIC: Building Equity. The program will leverage expertise and resources in our community to provide membership, career coaching and mentorship, training, conference participation, and other opportunities to a cohort of participants for eight months. We invite applications from early to mid-career practitioners who have faced barriers to inclusion and/or whose work directly contributes to equity in our field. The expertise of cohort members will also be showcased.

The anonymous donor whose gift sparked this initiative said,

I believe it is incumbent on the folks who make more, to give more—this is at the heart of being a “fair share” community, and something I feel strongly about.

Multilingual Connections logo

Thank you Multilingual Connections—our first Equity Partner!

We invite you to contribute to our Equity Fund in any amount, according to your ability. If you have benefited from EPIC activities and resources, if you support ethnography, and particularly if you have an employer that has funded your own professional development, please consider making a donation to benefit those who face barriers to inclusion.

Organizations making generous contributions can become Equity Partners; please contact us for more information.

Your contribution is an investment in others, in our community, and in the quality and rigor of our field. Equity makes our work and our impact broader, more robust, and more resilient. Diverse perspectives, frameworks, methods, critiques, and communities are essential to ethnography that catalyzes positive change.

We also invite you to:

  • Share our program with your networks—we are now accepting applications for Becoming EPIC: Building Equity
  • Offer your time and expertise—contact
  • Help leverage organizational sponsorships—contact

Thank you for being part of it!

Nichole Carelock, EPIC Board; EPIC Equity Council

Jennifer Collier Jennings, Executive Director, EPIC

Shakima Jackson-Martinez, Senior Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, AnswerLab; EPIC Equity Council

Kate Sieck, Senior Manager, Human-Centered AI, Toyota Research Institute; EPIC Equity Council

100% of your donation to the Equity Fund is dedicated to Equity Council programs. EPIC is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.

Featured images: Acrylic Paint Rivers by Mark Chadwick via flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)