Countdown to UC20 —

Community Building Partners


Unexpected connections don’t occur spontaneously in a vacuum, but as the result of interactions between diverse elements that includes people and the organizations they create. As we find ourselves two weeks closer to UC2020, we highlight the partners that continue to make this event possible.


Intertrend is an interdisciplinary communication agency based in Long Beach, California and MAEKAN’s partner. For over 20 years, Intertrend has helped to connect brands with select communities including a focus on Asian demographics.

Together with MAEKAN, we’ve hosted the first Unexpected Connections conference, our first dinner gathering “Re-examining Truths” as well as our upcoming UC2020 in early June.

Imprint Culture Lab

Imprint Culture Lab is an incubator and culture lab that aims to connect the cultural dots between segment, market and industry. Over the past 10 years, Imprint has brought together and built a growing network of talented minds and leaders through global culture conferences and interactive workshops.

These conferences have included the Unexpected Connections series of events on cross-platform creativity, which was conceived by Imprint.

Imprint Culture Lab’s diverse membership includes many of our speakers at last year’s Unexpected Connections conference, including graphic designer, curator and writer Kenya Hara who gave a talk on his concept and book Ex-formation, a term describing the focus on how little we know or what we do not know as a jumping point towards curiosity and creativity.

Coming Together

Where Hara’s idea of ex-formation questions our tendency to prematurely declare how many things we’ve heard of versus how well we know them, John C Jay’s “Future of Creativity” encourages us to unlearn what we think we know in order to learn again. As these themes have become increasingly relevant this year, we’re reminded that ideas, however entrenched or widespread, are not permanent and can be quickly changed by new ones.

This year, we’re excited to be bringing a new mix of personalities together to sharing new ideas and new takes on existing ones with Unexpected Connections 2020. This livestreamed fundraiser supports charities that are providing COVID-19-related relief, and will be held on Saturday, June 6.

To learn more about Unexpected Connections 2020, check out the event’s website.