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CIS-A2K/Strategic plan 2018-2020

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CIS-A2K firmly supports ‘Open Knowledge’ initiatives across various domains of knowledge. The Centre for Internet and Society actively pursues research and implementation programs across themes such as digital accessibility for persons with disabilities, access to knowledge, intellectual property rights, openness (including open data, free and open source software, open standards, open access, open educational resources, and open video), internet governance, telecommunication reform, digital privacy, and cyber-security.

With the changing social demography of India and the unprecedented expansion of Indian higher education system access to knowledge is a key area for both social mobility. Working with Wikimedia projects allows CIS-A2K team to engage with contributors and editors who view Knowledge as social equity thus re-aligning ‘access’ to information and knowledge. A2K in its upcoming work has a vision of building sustainable structures of knowledge in Indian languages. The network would not only consist of editors who will produce relevant and important knowledge but also will aim to include academics, researchers and policy makers who would be able to take activities of Knowledge Production to the level of social change.

It is more important than ever in the digital world that we operate to familiarise Indian students, readers, researchers and all other information seekers with various modes of knowledge production and the process with which information acquires credibility. Our imagination with Wikimedia projects does not end with metrics and best practices of the global communities. We would like to explore questions that have far reaching implications such as:

  • Profligacy of Fake Information and News
  • Challenges of content and knowledge production in local languages
  • Policy impediments towards developing local language curricula
  • Connecting global knowledge movements with local knowledge advocates
  • Building sustainable practices of peer review and competent local archives

Our objectives are to address the concerns that are listed above by developing processes that are participatory, democratic and inclusive in nature. The Wikimedia Foundation allows us to develop annual proposals to achieve our objectives. We have developed the following strategies to engage Open Knowledge communities in India:

  • Content Enrichment: Content in Indian languages is directly proportional to the popularity of the subject. As popularity drives the content there is inherent bias, lack of rigour and easy assumptions. A2K would aim to work towards defining and developing strategies that embody the values of NPOV, Verifiability and is of help to readers.
  • Sustainable Partnerships: While there have always been champions who have tirelessly espoused a cause, these initiatives are often one time movements and lose steam due to the apathy of general public and non cooperation of the civil society. A2K team would like to establish partnerships with educational and research institutions and developmental organisations which will provide anchor, leadership and support for the Wikimedia movement in the Indian subcontinent.
  • Create Inclusive movement practices: While the internet is still to be democratised in a real sense, the politics of access to internet is already visible in the Indian subcontinent. It is also visible in the way Open Knowledge Networks are operational and influenced in the Indian context. A2K would like to play a lead role in creating inclusive spaces for all contributors celebrating diversity.

CIS-A2K’s vision is to create—

  • Wikimedians who are well versed with policies of Wikimedia projects
  • Volunteers who are aware and alert towards the politics of access
  • Citizens who contribute to production of knowledge in local languages and
  • Institutional partners who are willing to partner in building Open and democratic platforms of Knowledge.