These sessions during Learning & Networking Week are designed for making meaningful connections in the EPIC community.

Learning & Networking Week is an exciting time when EPIC Members around the world gather online to connect and learn from each other. Participating in the program and using our Member Directory are great ways to pursue your targeted networking goals.

Social & Networking Sessions on this page include both Open Socials (no goals required!) and some activities to delight your inner ethno-geek and create connections you won’t forget (Jargon Karaoke is back!).


Open Social: EPIC2024 Is Here!

Monday, May 6, 10:30–11:00 am US Pacific Time

Host: Jamie Sherman, Principal Product Researcher, Esri

This open social session is just what it sounds like: time to come say hello to new friends and old, and to chat about… whatever we want!

Mapping Our 6 Degrees: An Interactive Networking Experiment

Monday, May 6, 11:00 am–12:00 pm US Pacific Time


  • Jamie Sherman, Principal Product Researcher, Esri
  • Kinsey Katchka, Independent Researcher & Scholar

In this experimental, interactive networking session we shall attempt to map our connections to each other in real time – not just one or two of us, but all of us! Can we do it in the time we have? We think YES because to think not is…unthinkable! We begin small. In pairs: other than EPIC, what do you have in common? Did you go to the same university? Work at the same organization? Do you both love gardening, or horror flicks? Now each pair will join another where 2+2=4. What are the connections now? Do you have the nodes or do you need new ones? Did you all just recently watch Barbie the Movie? Do you all own at least one cat? And now we multiply again, where 4+4=8. Rinse and repeat until we are all one mass of connections… or we descend into chaos. Either way, we will learn something about ourselves and each other and (maybe) create a very cool data visualization along the way!

Open Social with EPIC Board Members

Monday, May 6, 5:30–6:00 pm US Pacific Time

Host: Alexandra Zafiroglu, Professor of Cybernetics, Australian National University

You might have a burning question or idea to share with the board, or no agenda at all—come either way, we’d love to meet you and chat.

Futuring with Fridges

Monday, May 6, 6–7:00 pm US Pacific Time


  • Tracey Flores
  • Pallavi Laxmikanth, Researcher, Australian National University

Want to take a glimpse into your future? Just open your refrigerator! Join us for a playfully ethnographic social session. We’ll engage in an autoethnographic exercise as you explore the intimate and revelatory contents of your refrigerator and gain insight on how you ‘future’ the world. Bring a picture of your fridge/freezer, and network with other EPIC members as you compare your futuring styles.

Misery Loves Company

Tuesday, May 7, 11:30 am–12:00 pm US Pacific Time

Host: Jamie Sherman, Principal Product Researcher, Esri

BACK by popular demand! This is a 30 minute Open Whine in which we will share frustrations, irritations, and complaints about …whatever. We will commiserate, laugh, and generally share our shadenfreude with people who “get it.”

Open Social with EPIC Board Members

Wednesday, May 8, 9:30–10:00 am US Pacific Time


  • Shakima Jackson-Martinez, Board Member; Senior Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at AnswerLab
  • Simon Roberts, Board President; Partner at Stripe Partners
  • Shriram Venkatraman, Board Member; Assistant Professor of Business and Management at the University of Southern Denmark

You might have a burning question or idea to share with the board, or no agenda at all—come either way, we’d love to meet you and chat.

EPIC Debate Club: Jargon Karaoke II

Wednesday, May 8, 12–1:00 pm US Pacific Time


  • Elizabeth Churchill, Senior Director, Google
  • Elizabeth Anderson-Kempe, UX Experience Research Strategist, Google

BACK, by popular demand!! Do you just despise jargon? Do you love it? Either way, this EPIC Debate Club is for you! In this session we shall divide into teams to generate a list of the *most* neologic, confounding, and delightful jargon we can imagine. Each team shall receive the other team’s list of terms and create a persuasive set of ethnographic “insights” deploying as all of those terms (and perhaps a few extras). Points to the most convincing if not necessarily the most accurate deployment of jargon-laden insights, and other judging criteria which we shall invent on the fly (because we can!)

Pets of EPIC2024

Wednesday, May 8, 5:30–6:30 pm US Pacific Time

Host: Thomas Wright, VP User Research Lead, JP Morgan Chase

We love cats. We love dogs. Iguanas. Axolotls. We love any pets. And we want to hang out with the Pets of EPIC! We are hosting a species-inclusive social half-hour with critters of all kinds. Bring your favorite pet(s) along and introduce them to the EPIC community. In this session, you don’t have to make excuses for your cat tossing over a plant, or your dog running through the screen and barking – this time they will be the stars of the event. No pet? No problem. Come along to this adorable casual networking event.

Open Social

Friday, May 10, 12:30–1:00 pm US Pacific Time

Host: Kinsey Katchka, Indpendent Researcher & Scholar

A TGIF hangout to wrap up a great week together.