We welcome EPIC2016 to Minneapolis and to our theme pathmaking. This is the first time EPIC has been co-hosted by an anthropology department and a school of management, and pathmaking emphasizes the power of anthropology and business in combination to create transformative innovation, growth and strategic success for companies, industries and communities. The conference will highlight the essential role that anthropology’s deep understanding of human societies and their cultures plays to guide organizations through the difficult, real-world complexities and challenges they face today. We’ll share how pathmaking ethnography has shaped the progress of business, industry and knowledge throughout the world.

In the vision of EPIC2016, pathmaking for ethnographic practitioners in industry embodies the sharing of international best practices and advances in the field with theory in social sciences and business for the development of new horizons and transformational outcomes.

The Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul themselves embody this spirit of pathmaking. The unprecedented number of Fortune 1000 enterprises in the Twin Cities in retail merchandising, health care, financial services, design and manufacturing comprises primarily home-grown companies—implementing pathmaking in their own right. The Twin Cities are replete with paths of many types. There are the extensive physical paths—bicycle, running, hiking and the great Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. There are also paths that have been created in the Twin Cities’ world-class cultural community—theater, music, film and art. The Twin Cities are also the second most ethnically diverse urban complex in the United States; Asian, African, Latin American, European and Native Americans all make paths together as they cooperate in a vibrant civic setting. Minnesota’s state motto is L’Etoile du Nord—The Star of the North—pointing the way to yet newer paths.

Presentations for EPIC2016 should embody this spirit of pathmaking. Read the Call for Participation.

We look forward to receiving exciting proposals for EPIC2016, and we welcome all participants to Minneapolis for a splendid and stimulating conference.