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Grants:APG/Proposals/2018-2019 round 1/Wikimedia CH/Impact report form

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Purpose of the report[edit]

This form is for organizations receiving Annual Plan Grants to report on their results to date. For progress reports, the time period for this report will the first 6 months of each grant (e.g. 1 January - 30 June of the current year). For impact reports, the time period for this report will be the full 12 months of this grant, including the period already reported on in the progress report (e.g. 1 January - 31 December of the current year). This form includes four sections, addressing global metrics, program stories, financial information, and compliance. Please contact APG/FDC staff if you have questions about this form, or concerns submitting it by the deadline. After submitting the form, organizations will also meet with APG staff to discuss their progress.

Global metrics overview - all programs[edit]


Metric Achieved outcome Explanation
1. number of total participants 768 (1st half 2020) +
152 (GLAM) +
410 (Education) +
515 (Community)
= 1,845 of 1,700
This metric is aligned with the 2019 goal.
2. number of newly registered users 172 (1st half 2020) +
10 (GLAM) +
44 (Education) +
72 (Community)
= 298 of 250
This metric is aligned with the 2019 goal.
3. number of content pages created or improved, across all Wikimedia projects 14,776 (1st half 2020) +
5,574 (GLAM) +
210 (Education) +
35,000 (Community)
= 70,336 of 75,500 (20%)
This metric is under the goal because our effort is focused on quality rather than mass uploading; we will likely not reach the total amount we set out in the annual plan.
4. Content reused by other Wikimedia projects 3,318 (1st half 2020) +
958 (GLAM) +
110 (Education) +
2,000 (Community)
= 6,386 of 4,100 (101%)
This metric has been reached quickly and it supports our decision to focus on quality regarding the "number of content pages created or improved." Instead of proceeding with mass uploading, we are focusing more on impact in all Wikimedia projects, which means that the "Content reused by other Wikimedia projects" metric will have more value.
5. Number of people reached in Switzerland 1,052,000 (1st half 2020) +
150,000 (GLAM) +
200,000 (Education) +
500,000 (Community)
= 1,902,000 of 1,400,000 - 1,500,000 (75%)
This metric is aligned with the 2019 goal.

Telling your program stories - all programs[edit]

Executive summary

Seen globally, 2019 has been a year of significant changes on multiple fronts: On one hand, Wikimedia CH took a major step forward to streamline and professionalize its fundraising systems and database management, all the more important in light of the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The association also progressed in terms of strategic alignment and a continuation of its outreach efforts to become more visible. On the other hand, several roadblocks needed to be circumvented and solutions found, which meant that the association had to adapt quickly and flexibly to new circumstances.

Humanly speaking[edit]

As already mentioned in our last progress report, the unforeseen resignation of two valued staff members before the summer necessitated a timely and adequate response. For a small organization like Wikimedia CH, it meant not only a huge investment in time for recruiting and onboarding new staff members but also a certain amount of destabilization within the team.

In order to keep human resource costs as low as possible, the decision was made to recruit a communications manager working at a 90% rate directly as an employee of Wikimedia CH but to outsource the administrative/fundraising position at a 50% rate. We were very lucky to find Kerstin Sonnekalb, a seasoned and experienced communications professional for our communications role. She joined us in October 2019. Catrin Vimercati has been working with the chapter in the administrative/fundraising support role since July 2019. Catrin is already well-known in the Movement and an expert when it comes to the various Wiki tools and systems, making her a valuable asset for our wider team.

Generally speaking, in terms of HR, Wikimedia CH moved on with the implementation of its mindful HR policies, thereby moving towards GDPR compliance and transparent rules for everyone. After one year with the new system in place, it has to be said that, as a virtual organization, Wikimedia CH was able to become much more efficient and clear, applying its annualization of working time rules and keeping an eye on its “traffic light system” for the effective management of extra work and overtime.

Wikimedia CH remains a small matrix organization with clear values and structures. Whereby some staff members have a more programmatic workstream, others support the thematic workstreams and functions such as administration, communication, HR, accounting or leadership, influencing all the other areas of responsibility. As we have seen under the current circumstances associated with the coronavirus pandemic, Wikimedia CH’s virtual structure and organization have proven to be very effective and operational, allowing our daily work to continue even though in-person meetings and events are canceled.


In 2019, governance was very well organized and structured. One new board member – Mr. Jon Becker – was elected. Also, Wikimedia CH’s long-term board member and 2018 president, M. Bagawathram Maheswaran, got reelected and subsequently confirmed as president, ensuring stability and continuity at the board level.

Unfortunately, the board governance workshop, first envisaged for 2018, did not take place in 2019 as fundraising and other matters fully occupied the time. It has not been forgotten, of course, and will certainly be integrated into a future annual plan. First, however, 2020 will be dedicated to a five-year strategic workshop to align Wikimedia CH with the Wikimedia Movement's 2030 strategy. Board members are, as always, working closely alongside the chapter's executive director and staff, as needed, to support operations and fundraising.

In terms of the latter, we stepped up efforts in 2019 and, toward the end of the year, benefited from the insights of a contractor to identify gaps and a way forward for our association. We recognize that a fundraising expert must be hired in 2020 to support the various fundraising activities as well as maintain ongoing relations and interactions with donors. A clear strategy going forward must be established. Our "friend-raising" event, which was scheduled for October 2019 in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland, did not take place due to overlapping events and scarce human resources to accompany the effort. It was postponed to 2020.

Our official fundraising toward the end of the year encountered a major issue with Six Payment Services as well as with Postfinance (our bank). Promised donations could not be traced back to our bank accounts, which created a huge workload in order to find out where the problem was and to finally fix it. All was solved in the end, but for our small organization, this problem caused many worries and extra effort.

Finally, Wikimedia CH took official steps to get a proper domiciliation address through our auditing company and, at the same time, filed all necessary papers at the registry of commerce. Not having a physical office, we encountered a long and tedious process that finally, in March 2020 (the time this report was written), was crowned a success.

During 2019, a number of new contacts and partnerships were generated, including ones with major organizations, such as the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the Swiss arm of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO Switzerland). We will need to follow up and nurture these relationships in the years to come.


Program GLAM was very successful in 2019 in terms of achieving even more stability, continuity and diversity throughout its initiatives. The GLAM coordination group expanded its reach throughout the year, which brought with it some new and interesting partnerships, such as those with the Montreux Jazz Archives and the Swiss National Sound Archives. Copyright law and free licenses remain a sensitive topic in these areas. What is more, Wikimedia CH fostered strong relationships with Wikimedia Austria and Wikimedia Germany in order to further collaboration and knowledge exchange. Finally, from a technological perspective, the optimized GLAM Statistical Tool and the WMCH Map Service earned a lot of compliments from our various stakeholders.

In terms of Program Education, Wikimedia CH completely reworked its strategy moving forward to align it with the Wikimedia Movement's 2030 strategy and to incorporate the latest thinking among Switzerland’s education experts. Our chapter also wants to ensure that, in the future, a community can be built among those educators and learners who are already primed to become long-term Wikipedians. Worth mentioning when speaking about successful concrete initiatives are, among others, the Wikidata Zurich Training (in collaboration with Wikimedia Germany and the Wikidata team) and the Wikidata Zurich Hackathon, as well as the Wikipedia for Peace writing atelier organized together with Service Civil International Switzerland. Many new partnerships were fostered during the year, and the close collaboration between the managers of Programs GLAM and Education enabled coherent initiatives across Switzerland. In the future, a stable system of certification is envisaged (beginning with a Wikidata and GLAM curriculum).

Moving on to Program Community, 2019 saw the implementation of Wikimedia CH’s new strategy in this area. Community health and community building were the top two priorities this year as we are facing a decline in volunteers. Now having an experienced communications professional on our staff, a particular effort was made to reach out to and create new bonds with like-minded organizations and groups in order to extend the active community and to focus more on diversities (culture, language, gender, age, digital literacy, disabilities). Many more members have been welcomed within the association this year, showing the fruits of our relentless outreach efforts.

Unfortunately, the Italian-speaking WikiCon was canceled for 2019, but Wikimedia CH actively supported the French- and German-speaking conferences. Particularly worth mentioning under Program Community is the Wikifranca project, uniting all French-speaking countries behind a common goal and supporting learning and projects.

As usual, Wikimedia CH closely collaborated with France, Germany, Austria and Italy, not to mention other chapters and groups that don’t necessarily share the same languages with the association. Our chapter believes it is essential to exchange, learn and share to avoid reinventing the wheel.

Finally, concerning Partnership & Outreach, Wikimedia CH moved forward with its communication strategy, at long last, with the arrival of our new communication manager. One of the cornerstones of Wikimedia CH’s communication activities is raising awareness so that volunteers, partners and others know that our chapter is the association behind Wikipedia, related projects and all the Wiki projects that support open collaboration. In 2019, we took a major step forward in terms of social media presence and outreach. Anyone can now follow Wikimedia CH on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn as well as, for the first time, on Instagram. What is more, the foundations were laid for an effective and professional newsletter service to inform our audiences and stakeholders about our various activities. The first issue was sent out in early 2020.

In terms of partnerships, Wikimedia CH’s close ties with ParlDigi offered plenty of possibilities to meet with high-ranking officials and partners in Switzerland. Our chapter is more and more recognized as a viable partner and professional actor in the field of digital and free knowledge, leading to many good opportunities to network and align forces. Through close collaboration with the Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia Argentina, we were also able to approach the OHCHR and bring Wiki human rights projects to the French-speaking world.

Technically speaking[edit]

As mentioned earlier, Wikimedia CH stepped up our efforts this year to move along a path of automation and new database creation. We learned a great deal in this regard as there is no dedicated staff member for these initiatives at the moment. A major step forward was taken by implementing Salesforce as a content management system (CMS), which was linked to a marketing software program for the newsletters as well as a payment gateway for the various options that are present in Switzerland. Also, for the first time, Wikimedia CH conducted an email marketing campaign at the end of the year to augment the chapter's fundraising capacity. The fine-tuning and reconciliation of the different tools and databases is not over yet. But we feel confident that the chapter is on the right path for ensuring financial stability and more professional donor and member relations in the future. Our efforts can be seen in the increase in fundraising revenue within our budget.

As a result of our strategic efforts, a new website was released in autumn 2019; the donation page now hosts an FAQ section responding to general questions. The website hosting and the servers for donations are not with the same company and not at the same place, which ensures security and data protection.

A Program Education site will be set up as soon as possible in 2020 to streamline information and reach out to interested parties. A GLAM site is planned for the future. More than ever, we are closer to our stakeholders.

Strategic context for Wikimedia CH

Wikimedia CH is the Swiss chapter of the global Wikimedia Movement and is officially recognized as such by the Wikimedia Foundation. In this report, we tell the story of our work in four strategic programs:

  1. Program GLAM – We collaborate with galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAM) throughout Switzerland to provide digital access to memory institutions’ collections and artifacts. We aim to share the country’s culture and history in a sustainable format and across all borders.
  2. Program Education – We deliver and collaborate on education programs that advance learning at every level, for both children and adults. Our work supports lifelong learning as well as teachers and trainers at schools, universities and other institutions of higher education.
  3. Program Community – We help the Wikimedia CH community grow, supporting existing members and cultivating new Wikipedians. Among other activities, we train and mentor Wikipedia editors and support the diverse and multicultural interests of our community with targeted programming.
  4. Partnership & Outreach – We believe in using our unique position in the field of information exchange to be an influencer on national and international issues concerning open access and open knowledge. We offer our viewpoints on copyright, technology and more.

We use the image of a house to represent our work. The roof represents our mission of curating and disseminating free knowledge. The house itself is filled with the four strategic programs: GLAM, Education, Community and Partnership & Outreach. The walls and windows encompass and give form to our strategic directions. The walls are our technology, processes (financial policies, guidelines, etc.) and soft skills (human resources, people development). The windows give us transparency, representing good governance and collaboration. The house rests securely on the foundation of our solid legal background and is surrounded by a neighborhood of like-minded organizations, chapters, the Wikiverse and the Wikimedia Foundation.

Program GLAM

A1.Background and context

Wikipedia CH can look back upon a successful year of achieving more stability, continuity and diversity for the GLAM program. We consistently followed the GLAM strategy, and the results are showing. Our reputation has grown a lot, and Switzerland’s GLAM institutions consider us to be a valued and trusted partner.

We moved forward in establishing valuable partnerships with important institutions. These included, among others, the Swiss National Sound Archives and the archives of the Montreux Jazz Festival, which have engaged us for Wikidata projects on audio and audiovisual content – a challenging area in terms of copyright law and free licenses. The Wikidata project with the Montreux Jazz Archives will be implemented in 2020. As these partnerships moved forward, another project came to an end. We discontinued our collaboration with the Swiss Foundation Public Domain. Instead, we have given our support to a new project in this area, called the CC0-Project, which was launched by the former president of the Swiss Foundation Public Domain after he left the foundation. We expect to share more about the CC0-Project in 2020. Overall, we strengthened our commitment to preserving and sharing Switzerland’s audio heritage.

At the international level, Wikimedia CH fostered collaboration with Wikimedia Germany and Wikimedia Austria to spread the vision, mission and essence of one strong Wikimedia Movement, instead of single-country activities. Moreover, we took a big step forward with technology. We extensively improved the GLAM Statistical Tool and the WMCH Map Service. Our technical developments have received positive feedback from our partners, from every audience where the tools have been presented and from GLAM community members, who became active in analyzing the free, accessible statistics and presenting the tools to their GLAM contacts and networks.

When delivering programming and evaluating metrics, we concentrated on quality more than quantity. We continued programmatic formats that have functioned well in years past. We did so for two reasons. On the one hand, the continuity helped to build community health and enhance retention. On the other hand, it built trust with GLAM institutions. Our ongoing, successful formats included GLAM on Tour, edit-a-thons, member training and online campaigns. Also, we did our best to strengthen our partner relationships by fulfilling growing requests from GLAM institutions to provide staff training on Wikimedia projects and by supporting our partners in GLAM + Wikidata activities.

In summary, we are satisfied with our 2019 GLAM achievements and stakeholders’ feedback, especially from Swiss GLAM partners and community members.

Wikimedia CH GLAM Strategy

GLAM Annual Plan 2019

A2.Highlight activities

In this section, we feature two highlights of GLAM activities from the second half of 2019. The activities from the first half were reported in the progress report. The following two activities contributed to our progress and our lessons learned, which are discussed later in this report.

GLAM on Tour at the Swiss National Sound Archives[edit]

The Swiss National Sound Archives, with headquarters in Lugano, is mandated with safeguarding Swiss sound and audiovisual heritage. Also known as the Fonoteca, the archive collects recordings, but importantly, it also restores and digitalizes them for preservation. It has two studios equipped with all the devices necessary for various types of restoration, such as artistic and technical restoration. This year's GLAM on Tour at the Fonoteca was a real success. For the first time in the project’s history, a Swiss event sold out a month before the registration deadline, even though we allowed more attendees than originally planned, ultimately accommodating 28 participants onsite.

Though the archive is situated in an Italian-speaking city, our GLAM community didn’t fear language barriers. We had a big group of participants from Germany, Wikipedians from Italy and participants from Switzerland’s German- and French-speaking regions. Most attendees were experienced Wikipedians, including some who rarely participate in our in-person events. Furthermore, we engaged well-regarded expert speakers in the field, such as Dr. phil. Theo Mäusli, Strategic Advisor and Project Manager for Archives Operations of SRG SSR (Swiss Radio and Television Association), as well as the founder and former director of the Fonoteca, Pio Pellizzari. Last but not least, the current acting director, Günther Giovannoni, addressed the attendees.

We offered to set up the GLAM Statistical Tool for the Fonoteca so that they could see statistics on their media files uploaded to Wikimedia Commons. The management and staff members appreciated having access to the tool. (See the accompanying screenshot, which is an extract of the statistics in the Views Chart.)


Specific metrics

  • 726,000 article views
  • 19 editors
  • 22 articles created
  • 116 articles edited
  • 515 edits
  • 311 uploads to Wikimedia Commons
  • Additional Wikidata entries were not recorded through the Outreach Dashboard.


Action Day 2212 at the ETH Library[edit]

The Wikipedia Action Day 2212 at the ETH Library in Zurich aimed to improve the quality of existing Wikipedia articles concerning 2,212 Swiss municipalities. Also, the event endeavored to enrich the articles with photographs by the Swiss aerial pioneer Walter Mittelholzer and his successor Werner Friedli. It was an initiative that served as a follow-up activity of the Swiss Archives Day, which takes place only every five years. Action Day 2212 was possible due to our long-term partnership with the ETH Library and with the support of Diego Hättenschwiler, a very active, experienced Wikipedian and Wikimedia CH member.

The ETH Library asked their employees to participate in the activity voluntarily but during their working hours. In the end, approximately 20 employees joined the event. Together with six team members from the library’s image archive and with coaching and mentoring from Mr. Hättenschwiler, the employees integrated the historical aerial images into Wikipedia articles. Nearly 1,000 historical aerial photographs of Swiss communities enriched Wikipedia articles. Nicole Graf, head of the ETH Library Image Archive, was happy with this success. She estimated that, without the event, it would have taken the library approximately three years to achieve the same results.
Article in Arcinfo about historic aerial photos in Wikimedia Commons
The ETH Library database offers access to its images, and pictures can be downloaded for free if the authors’ rights allow it. Nevertheless, the library recognized that uploading their historical images onto Wikimedia Commons and integrating them into Wikipedia articles made them visible and accessible to a wider public. With the support of the ETH Library and our new Outreach & Communication Manager, Action Day 2212 reached even more people via press coverage.


Specific metrics

  • 819 articles enriched with historical aerial photographs
  • 958 photos utilized

A3.Additional program activities

In this section, we describe a selection of 2019 projects that aligned with the GLAM Annual Plan's focus on libraries and archives, museums and galleries, national and international GLAM outreach, and digital competence and technology.

Program 1: Libraries and archives

Our work with libraries and archives demonstrates how we diversified our portfolio in 2019. Wikimedia CH has partnered with many cultural institutions in Switzerland, but until 2019, we had been less active in the Italian-speaking area. Likewise, our partnerships had not focused as heavily on the country’s audio heritage. In 2019, we reached out to the Swiss National Sound Archives, the federal repository for the preservation of Swiss audio and audiovisual heritage. The archive is located in the city of Lugano, in the Italian-speaking area of Switzerland. We set the cornerstone of our new partnership with a Wikidata project that focuses on two objectives: (1) cleansing data and uploading metadata and (2) delivering the archive a logic for easy metadata synchronization between Wikidata records and the institution’s digital database.

In addition to diversifying our programming, our 2019 activities also demonstrated how we use proven, replicable formats to expand offerings and deliver ongoing series that foster stable relationships with our members. In 2019, we continued using the popular GLAM on Tour format to build our network of editors and enthusiasts. Along with GLAM on Tour at the Swiss National Sound Archives, we held GLAM on Tour at the Iron Library, which included the economic archives of the corporation Georg Fischer. (See the project page; see the invitation.) The director was very surprised and happy to receive statistics about media file usage in Wikipedia projects and about views of the images they contributed to Wikimedia Commons. Up to mid-March 2020, the Georg Fischer and Iron Library media files had received approximately 750,000 views (see the screenshot of the associated Views Chart).

Wikimedia CH also used edit-a-thons and International Archives Week 2019 to deliver and expand upon proven, replicable formats. For example, Diego Hättenschwiler organizes and leads ateliers in Switzerland’s German-speaking region, hosted by GLAM institutions. These events, such as the six in 2019, offer how-to lessons for beginners and long-time volunteers alike, while also making improvements to Wikimedia content. The team at doku-zug.ch, a publicly accessible documentation center, also hosts an ongoing series of workshops to improve information about Zug. Two were held in 2019. (See the flyer for the December workshop.)

Wikimedia CH supported International Archives Week 2019 in June. By working with our ongoing partner, the Association of Swiss Archivists, we advanced the theme “Designing the Archives in the 21st Century” to encourage contributors to enhance the presence of Swiss archives on Wikimedia. It was an outgrowth of and followed the successful format of International Museum Day, which is described in the next section.

Program 2: Museums and galleries

Our 2019 programming for museums and galleries illustrated how to take the momentum behind one project to spin off other projects, how to offer continuity and how to meld Program GLAM and Program Education objectives. Also, we learned that we must balance continuity with diversity.

Museums map

Wikimedia CH’s activities for International Museum Day and International Archives Week serve as a good example of offering continuity in programming and scaling up a successful format to meet other community needs. For the second year, Wikimedia CH participated in International Museum Day. It has proven to be a scalable project that allows us to include other chapters and to apply the same format to additional activities. Because of the 2018 event’s success, we actively involved two other chapters in 2019 – Wikimedia Austria and Wikimedia Germany – to run a common online campaign to improve the presence of museums on Wikimedia. We also expanded the 2018 online geographical map of Swiss museums to create a three-country map so that contributors could quickly identify gaps that needed their attention; these are the maps that were the seed of the standalone WMCH Map Service discussed later in this section.

SBB RAe 4-8 1021

Along with our online campaign, we supported two physical events, one at the SBB Historic train depot in Olten and the other at the Natural History Museum of Geneva. At the latter event, 55 new images were added to Wikipedia Commons. We found that these physical events were not as well-received as the online campaign. Therefore, we learned that this project works best online, which is what we will concentrate on for 2020.

Muséum d'histoire naturelle de Genève

As we did for libraries and archives, Wikimedia CH offered continuity to the museum community by supporting edit-a-thons. In July, several Wikipedians joined an edit-a-thon and picnic, making updates to Wikipedia information on Geneva's flora and fauna using content generously shared by the Geneva Conservatory and Botanical Garden. In addition to enjoying a guided tour led by a botanist, the participants uploaded more than 100 files to Wikipedia Commons. Wikimedia CH also supported the Museum of Natural History of Neuchâtel in their project to share their fish fossil collection with the world and, more specifically, with scientists who reach out to them for quality pictures of the fossils. A template was created to ensure accuracy and consistency when sharing the fossils' detailed scientific metadata, including bibliographical references. Our chapter helped the museum to make a mass upload of the images, as well, along with this metadata.

Also, Les sans pagEs held a number of edit-a-thons called Wikimercredis at MAMCO at the Musée d'art moderne et contemporain (MAMCO; the contemporary art museum in Geneva) in the first half of 2019. The project concluded midyear (read the post-project summary). While Wikimedia CH strives to have long-term relationships and follow-up activities with GLAM institutions, we realize that either the GLAM institution might lack commitment over time or community members want diversity in their work that focuses on a variety of topics and institutions. A lesson we learned from the Wikimercredis at MAMCO series is that the better strategy may be to offer longer breaks and then return to events as community members and/or GLAM institutions reengage.

The WikiNeoComensia project and GLAM trainings both showed how Program GLAM and Program Education work synergistically. These activities aligned with the Wikimedia Foundation’s 2030 strategy, specifically Recommendation 7: Invest in Skills Development. Also, such events helped us to meet the clear requests of GLAM institutions to have their staff trained to participate in Wikipedia projects. Hosted by university faculty, WikiNeoComensia involves Wikipedians as guest lecturers in seminar series to train future museum personnel to edit Wikipedia and share the results of their research. Other GLAM training events for 2019 included a Wikidata workshop in Lausanne in March, where Shonagon, a Wikipedian who works at the Louvre, trained community members. Also, the Wikidata Zurich Training 2019 in November (described later in this report’s Program Education section) offered GLAM experts the chance to improve their Wikidata proficiency.

Program 3: National and international GLAM outreach

This year, Wikimedia CH offered more diverse, balanced programming for all the linguistic regions of Switzerland. We also reached out to neighboring Wikimedia chapters and the cross-border regions to work jointly on cultural heritage projects and respond to the needs of memory institutions.

Wikimedia CH, in cooperation with the Association of Swiss Archivists, organized GLAMwikiCH Day on 28 March hosted by the Swiss National Library in Bern. The event answered the question, “What does the use of Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons and Wikidata offer to galleries, libraries, archives and museums?” More than 60 GLAM professionals from Switzerland and neighboring countries attended. Special emphasis was placed on how Wikidata can support heritage institutions in the landscape of linked open data. Thanks to the services of the company avl interprètes sàrl, presentations in French and German were simultaneously translated to other languages so that attendees from across the nation and across our borders could easily join the conversation. The individual speakers’ presentations were recorded on video; all material is available on the event page.

The GLAM Wiki Network is very important for Wikimedia CH, and this year it grew to have a more national focus. It is a group of representatives of notable Swiss memory institutions who meet quarterly to share knowledge, coordinate Wikimedia-related activities, provide feedback and define needs for Swiss GLAM. In 2019, Wikimedia CH was given the lead for organizing and moderating the regular meetings, and the network met its commitment to expand into other linguistic areas of Switzerland, beyond the German-speaking region. For example, the Lausanne Wikidata workshop was held in the French-speaking region. Due to the network’s interest in Wikidata’s possibilities, it has been the focus of recent meetings.

Wikimedia CH also supported and contributed to two DACH GLAM meetings in Germany. GLAM Berlin 2019 took place in February, and GLAM Munich 2019 was held in November. Participants discussed ongoing international, European and national GLAM projects and tools, how to improve GLAM projects and how to better organize the DACH collaboration in the GLAM area in order to create a bigger impact.

Program 4: Digital competence & technology

Digital competence and technology is an important pillar for Wikimedia CH, and many of our 2019 projects furthered this strategic program. For example, for several years, we have supported the Open Cultural Data Hackathon as part of OpenData.ch’s Friends of OpenGLAM Network. We share the same mission: strive towards an open culture, explore technical innovation, and bring together open-knowledge advocates with students and professionals of engineering, art and culture. In September, we supported GLAM mix’n’hack 2019, the fifth edition of the Open Cultural Data Hackathon. Five multidisciplinary teams experimented with new ways to share cultural data, be it a web or mobile application, a mediation device or an artistic performance. (Read the mix’n’hack’s final report.)

Mix'n'Hack Sion 2019

Other examples of how Wikimedia CH supports digital competence and technology pertain to our own software development, with which we respond to the needs and requirements of Swiss GLAM partners and the GLAM community. The first of two software programs we’ll discuss is the GLAM Statistical Tool, which allows GLAM institutions to access a set of statistics about their Wikimedia content and to monitor media files uploaded to Wikimedia Commons. For example, the File Details chart (see the screenshot) allows an institution to gain insights on a particular image that is part of the institution’s Wikimedia content; the institution can see how many projects use the image and how many times it has been viewed. The Usage Chart (see the screenshot) shows how distinct media files are used for different projects and pages.

In the second half of the year, we developed additional functionalities, which will be released in 2020. These developments will significantly improve the usability of the GLAM Statistical Tool as a working instrument. The added functionalities include new search features for media files, a statistical drill-down by image category, category-related statistics, and analysis of unused media on a statistical level but also as a practical instrument for planning future work. Also, the GLAM Statistical Tool will include an algorithm that suggests unused media files to be added to selected Wikipedia articles, with direct links to the suggested articles.

We also performed a stress test of the GLAM Statistical Tool in 2019, in collaboration with Alex Stinson and Sandra Fauconnier, to verify the feasibility for a wider rollout. We tested to ensure the tool is ready to receive significant amounts of data simultaneously from bigger GLAM institutions worldwide. The results indicated that, in a shared infrastructure, we are currently capable of supporting a maximum number of 1,000 categories and 500,000 images per GLAM institution. There is the possibility of adding more categories with investment in a single dedicated machine. The two major constraints of the current tool are the I/O time and the memory space (both RAM and disk space).

The other software that our chapter has released and is further enhancing is WMCH Map Service – a tool that is based on Wikidata Query Service and allows editors and institutions to visualize georeferenced Swiss GLAMs or other non-GLAM institutions or sites. The online interactive maps show related digital content that is available on and, importantly, absent from Wikimedia projects. For example, a user could click on a map of Swiss museums, zoom in on Zurich (see the screenshot) and see the related institutions that have no Wikipedia articles about them (261 at the time of the screenshot), one article (222), up to three articles (117) and four or more articles (30).

Due to its popularity and the increased amount of data, we will further develop the WMCH Map Service in 2020. Besides a graphical redesign, we envisage improving the response-time performance, especially for multicountry maps. Furthermore, we want to include some statistics on the development of the maps over time to measure the impact of activities and to help the community understand how the coverage of Wikimedia content has evolved. The tool is on GitHub for further development and for others to use.

A4.Progress toward the plan

Looking back at our proposal for 2019 and this report, we have been able to implement all activities of the GLAM program with success. In 2019, we set the goal of helping Swiss GLAM institutions to prepare for the digital transformation that is sweeping through most industries; we provided consulting, mentoring, project management, training, solutions and tools and interconnected the institutions with our volunteer community. We aimed to become a trusted partner for GLAM institutions in order to move forward, and we did. Providing access to and safeguarding cultural heritage increasingly depends on interlinked information and communication technology. With Program GLAM and our integrated Wikidata-related activities, we are on the right pathway.

Furthermore, we consistently focused on replicable, scalable project formats and strengthened our GLAM partnerships. Routinely listening to the needs of GLAM institutions, members and other partners is essential to building a responsive and professional program. So too is consistently delivering projects that meet those needs. GLAMwikiCH Day is an excellent example of how to build trust, share knowledge and listen to the needs of GLAM. It was an event that brought together a wide community of experts, volunteers and GLAM institutions, from across the nation and neighboring countries, to discuss the benefits of Wikimedia projects for memory institutions, exchange lessons learned and talk about how to integrate Wikimedia projects in the daily process of a GLAM.

We used the outcomes and feedback to adapt our ongoing GLAM program accordingly and to design the 2020 annual plan. One outcome of GLAMwikiCH Day was the GLAM institutions’ requests for specific GLAM-related trainings on Wikimedia projects. Therefore, in the second half of the year, we organized different events together with the Education Program Manager, offering GLAM-specific trainings, such as expert training on Wikidata and a session on managing mass uploads with Pattypan.

In 2019, we also continued adding an international component to our community, especially by working with the Wikimedia chapters in Germany, Austria and France. In terms of GLAMTech projects, we took a big step forward in 2019 by further expanding and enhancing the GLAM Statistical Tool and the WMCH Map Service. Both technologies respond to the needs of our GLAM community and our GLAM partners to monitor the impact of our projects.

A5.Lessons for our future work

Learning and sharing

As Program GLAM has grown, we have learned a great deal. Here are just a few of this year’s lessons:

  • Remember that continuity and scalability are important – We became a more active and decisive chapter in the last two years, confidently building continuity with formats and projects that have proven successful. We developed scalable projects and solutions, such as our activities for International Museum Day and International Archives Week, as well as our procedures in implementing Wikidata projects for GLAM. Furthermore, the WMCH Map Service and GLAM Statistical Tool can be scaled, used and shared with other chapters and the international community. With these types of projects, we are able to make a greater impact with fewer resources.
  • Offer knowledge as a service for GLAM professionals – It is worth mentioning again the feedback from GLAMwikiCH Day. Attendees and panelists agreed that GLAM professionals must become expert contributors, and Wikimedia CH members should strive to help train them. Ultimately, what emerged from GLAMwikiCH Day was a series of events to offer continuous training to GLAM professionals, as well as the creation of a network of trainers who are supported by our chapter. November’s Wikidata Zurich Training 2019 is an example of such training.
  • Balance continuity with diversity – This year, we learned that building up long-term GLAM partnerships is valuable for GLAMs and for us as an association but not necessarily always for the GLAM community. For all parties involved, engagement and interest depend on activities' formats and the intervals between activities when they're part of a series. We realized that implementing repetitive follow-up activities with the same memory institution only works in the midterm. The GLAM community likes to explore and research a variety of collections, archives and institutions. Therefore, to keep the volunteer community motivated, it makes more sense to plan activities less frequently if the activities are quite similar to one another. The same principle applies to GLAM institutions; they might lack commitment in promoting events offered by Wikimedia CH or the volunteer community. For example, the Wikimercredis MAMCO events worked well for a while but were discontinued. The writing ateliers in the German-speaking area are successful and take place regularly but in different institutions or, when hosted in the same institution, at longer time intervals.
Looking ahead

In 2020 and beyond, we plan to continue expanding upon and enhancing those activities that have proven successful, scalable and responsive to our multicultural community.

To amplify our relatively new partnership with the Swiss National Sound Archives, we will enter the project definition phase for scaling the project. Based on the competencies we have built, we will proceed with a GLAM + Wikidata project with the Montreux Jazz Archives, which preserves and celebrates over 5,000 concerts from the Montreux Jazz Festival stretching back 50 years, with more than 11,000 hours of video, 6,000 hours of audio and 80,000 photos. Also in 2020, we will continue to build awareness and enter public discussions and roundtables with important audiovisual stakeholders to move toward an open license policy. Such a policy is essential so that our community may share free and accessible knowledge in a responsible manner that respects those who make and own content.

Our efforts to share our cultural heritage has never ended at Switzerland’s borders, and we will continue to emphasize international cooperation in 2020. We will continue working with Wikimedia Germany and Wikimedia Austria to build bridges in the German-speaking region of Switzerland. Also, we’ll enhance our collaborations with Wikimedia France and Wikimedia Italy to further highlight the cultural traditions of the French- and Italian-speaking regions.

We will shape Program GLAM 2020 based on our learnings and based on the Wikimedia Foundation’s Strategy 2030 recommendations. Slowly but surely, it seems that all our strategies and projects are connecting with one another and forming a cohesive Program GLAM. Therefore, for 2020, we will continue on our pathway and focus on continuity balanced with diverse programming by delivering the programs and formats that are showing success throughout Switzerland.

Program Education

B1.Background and context

Program Education is in an evolutionary phase. We rethought our Wikimedia CH Education Strategy in 2019, finalizing at the end of the year because of a combination of factors that we will detail later in this section. In past years, we primarily focused on activities and events for universities. In 2019, however, we took steps to extend our reach to offer more activities to the upper secondary and vocational education and training (VET) systems. We also sought to more fully encompass continuing education and training (CET), which is often called lifelong learning. Finally, we shifted our programming for younger children who are in primary and lower secondary schools. For these young people, we decided to concentrate on tools and training for their teachers so that the educators themselves could decide how best to implement activities in their classrooms in ways that adhere to curricular requirements.

We revised the Wikimedia CH Education Strategy for three reasons. First, we aligned our chapter’s approach with the Wikimedia Movement’s 2030 strategy. The vision we’ve included in our strategy is as follows: "The Wikimedia CH education program supports the growth and improvement of people’s skills through free knowledge, considering diversity as a value and not a weakness and offering everyone qualitative content and tools and open and accessible infrastructures in collaboration with partners." This vision supports the two main pillars of the Wikimedia Movement’s strategy: knowledge equity and knowledge as service.

Second, we incorporated the latest thinking among Switzerland’s education experts. The Swiss Coordination Center for Research in Education (SKBF-CSRE) is an institution under the auspices of the Swiss federal government and the Swiss Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Education. It examines trends in Swiss education. The SKBF-CSRE Swiss Education Report 2018 correctly explains that modern educational standards must respond to the demands placed on students and workers by technology, particularly the latest impacts of automation and digitalization. In 2016, Switzerland’s German-speaking cantons began introducing media and technology into the curriculum (what is called Curriculum 21). However, cantons in other linguistic areas are still modernizing their standards, and all cantons are considering ways to help learners thrive in the changing educational landscape.

CET has received a great deal of attention as the education system rethinks its response to technological change. For example, the Federal Act on Continuing Education and Training was recently reviewed and modified. As the Swiss Confederation has stated, “Lifelong learning is all about keeping abreast of the latest developments in one’s field. New skills, certificates and qualifications improve one’s employment prospects on the labour market.” In this respect, the transformation at the CET level is running parallel to the transformation in the upper secondary, VET and tertiary systems.

The third and final reason that we revised our strategy was that we wanted to build community among those educators and learners who are primed to become long-term Wikipedians. Therefore, a vital component of our work in 2019 remained the university community, a community that already encourages people to openly share research and advance new ideas and technologies. But we also focused on upper secondary education, VET and CET communities because they, too, are keen to address the impacts of automation and digitalization. We also view these communities as likely groups from which to expand our Program Education membership because they are not as constrained by prescribed curricula as lower systems are. Upper secondary education is the first level that is not compulsory for Swiss students. It begins at about age 15.

Conversely, the primary and lower secondary education levels are compulsory. While they are beginning to include new technologies in their lessons, they must adhere to government standards and remain resistant to external players like us. The possibility of our chapter offering programming for Switzerland’s primary and lower secondary students is linked to partnerships with cantonal departments or with faculties of pedagogy.

Wikimedia CH’s new approach matched recent recommendations from the Wikimedia Movement’s strategy, particularly Recommendation 7: Invest in Skills Development. Also, we linked Program Education to our chapter’s other two programs, GLAM and Community. Our guiding principle was to build community, enthusiasm and commitment among Wikipedians who perceive Program Education as central to their present-day lives but may very well consider the other programs to be more important to their futures.


Wikimedia CH Education Strategy v.2.7 (December 2019)

B2.Highlight activities

In this section, we feature two of this year’s Program Education activities, through which we learned about fostering long-term relationships with our members and building lifelong skills.

Zurich Wikidata Network and beyond[edit]

Our chapter’s Zurich Wikidata Network is three years old now and still growing. It is based around the University of Zurich and includes researchers, students and professionals. It demonstrates the value of nurturing a group with an established vision and committed members. The network held successful conferences in 2017 and in 2018 (see also the 2018 meetups), and it continued to produce good events and results in 2019, as well as retain good editors.

Wikimedia CH got in touch with this group in 2016 after reading a message in the Wikidata mailing list about a hackathon organized in Zurich. The group of organizers was not local, but they were Wikidata volunteers who had moved in Switzerland to complete their research at the university. Since then, Wikimedia CH has supported this group, around which has coalesced other Wikidata volunteers around the German-speaking area.

On 2–3 November, our chapter hosted a first-of-its-kind Wikidata Zurich Training 2019 in collaboration with Wikimedia Germany, the University of Zurich, the Statistical Office of the town of Zurich and the canton of Zurich. The partners shared costs to ensure an affordable event and make the Zurich Wikidata Network more sustainable. The maximum number of people, 60 participants, learned to develop tools and to consult, integrate, populate and modify Wikidata. Also, they were given a chance to practice what they learned with live coding and support. It was the first time we experimented with this format, and it proved successful. Topics included querying Wikidata with SPARQL, implementing tools for Wikidata, coding an app or bot and analyzing Wikidata dumps. Expert trainers hailed from Germany and Poland as well as Switzerland.

While the Zurich Wikidata Network is a valuable community in its own right, our chapter intends to replicate it and integrate it with groups from other regions of Switzerland and neighboring countries. We want to ensure that newcomers feel welcome by hosting future events and activities outside of Zurich. For example, we held the 2019 hackathon (described next) in Zurich, but the 2020 hackathon will be in Lausanne, in Switzerland’s French-speaking region. The Ecole Polytechnique Federal de Lausanne (EPFL) will help to host the 2020 hackathon. Wikimedia CH has a longstanding relationship with the EPFL, the other Swiss polytechnic, that mirrors our partnership with the University of Zurich.

Wikidata Zurich Hackathon 2019[edit]

While the Wikidata Workshop was a new format for us, the Wikidata Zurich Hackathon 2019 continued a popular format for the third year. On 23–24 November, 40 participants formed teams around shared interests to work toward finished products. Wikimedia CH and its host partners suggested a set of challenges to spark creativity, but the participants could pursue whatever type of product they wanted, which may have involved creating a tool for Wikidata editors, a visualization that helps analyze Wikidata content or a bot or app.

They were encouraged to form diverse groups so that they could learn from each other’s expertise. One team member might have been a front-end coder, someone else a database master, another member a geographical data analyst and still another an interface designer. Students and professionals worked side by side. The teams were encouraged to base their products around Wikidata but also to consider other data sources, such as the open data of the city of Zurich and the open data of the canton of Zurich.

B3.Additional program activities

In this section, we describe Education's programmatic categories and illustrate our work in each by describing examples of the chapter’s 2019 activities and events.

Program 1: Schools (primary and lower secondary levels)

As mentioned previously, in 2019, our chapter finalized a new strategy and action plan for Program Education. In the action plan, we explain that our projects for schools must become tools for teachers. Our reasoning is best explained by the theory of change from the team at the Wikipedia Education Program:

Wikipedia editors are born, not made. We believe that you can teach someone the skills required to contribute to Wikipedia, but can’t teach someone to become a Wikipedian – if you’re predisposed to contributing to Wikipedia, then exposure to Wikipedia editing as part of a class assignment will encourage you to transition from reader to editor. But we believe that if you’re not already inclined to edit, you will never become a long-term contributor.

For this reason, Program Education's 2019 activities focused on recruiting more teachers and trainers to become long-term users of and contributors to Wikimedia tools. In so doing, we built our community and built the capacity of teachers to inspire students who have a passion for Wikimedia, the ones born to be Wikipedia editors.

Following this direction, Wikimedia CH continued to collaborate with the faculty of pedagogy of Locarno, for the third year in a row, on a project called #theLab. It is a laboratory where classes experience a different teaching methodology for one day, and teachers prepare lessons with the team of the laboratory (pedagogists and Wikipedians) to introduce learning through games. A similar set-up is used for Media in Piazza, which is not a simple event. A network of education-related organizations meets regularly and has joined together by signing a manifesto to promote education in the fields of media and digital technologies. The Swiss Federal Commission for Child and Youth Affairs named Media in Piazza among the most innovative educational projects in Switzerland in its report called Growing Up in the Digital Age.

The plan for next year is to proceed with defining these types of educational models and tools, using these experiences to start to scale them up in other cantons. The collaboration with the faculty of pedagogy of Locarno helped us learn how to approach the schools and the teachers in Switzerland, as the main contact is the individual responsible for media training for future teachers.

Program 2: Universities & high schools

As mentioned earlier, we have had the longest-running and most robust relationships with faculty and students at the tertiary level. For this community, we offered more specialized programming in 2019, such as activities focused on Wikidata and Open Science. Focusing on these tools helped to cultivate longer-term relationships with community members whose interests lie in learning life skills.

Currently, the chapter’s main activities are carried out in collaboration with some key partners, such as the University of Zurich, University of Neuchâtel and University of Fribourg. The activities concerning the University of Zurich have been mentioned in the highlights above. With Neuchâtel and Fribourg, we are working more on digital humanities with a good merger of Program GLAM and Program Education. In these cases, Wikimedia CH is adapting to offer lifelong vocational skills to the universities, so our activities are more closely connected to the use of specific Wikimedia projects. We integrate didactic activities with professional training. Using a combination of theoretical lessons and practical activities, the universities operate in a way that keeps the lessons connected to the work activities that students will encounter in their future professions.

For this reason, edit-a-thons, hackathons or datathons match very well to the needs of universities because participants can get in touch with the practical world and with professionals in several areas. Professionals from museums or libraries can interact with students in the humanities, professionals with private companies or software development firms can work with technology students, or those from research laboratories can network with science students. At an international level, Wikimedia CH has also supported events such as the Wiki Science Competition to show the potential of Wikimedia projects for scientific research. In return, the chapter has benefited from collaborations with socially responsible private research centers.

Program 3: Lifelong learning

Our 2019 activities for CET (continuing education and training) aligned closely with Recommendation 7 in the 2030 strategy: Invest in Skills Development. Our lifelong learning programming focused on improving the knowledge and skills of individuals who have likely already completed their formal education – who are already building their careers, changing careers or simply hoping to feed their intellectual curiosity. Examples include the Zurich Wikidata Network and Wikidata Zurich Hackathon 2019 described previously in this report’s Program Education highlights. Another example is our Wikidata Workshop in Lausanne on 29 March. Wikimedia CH hosted GLAMwikiCH Day the day before (get details in this report’s Program GLAM section). This earlier event was an opportunity to discuss the value of the Wikiverse for GLAM institutions, and we recognized the need to offer attendees training on Wikidata on the 29th so that they could learn to tap into the wealth of tools available to them.

For 2020, we will primarily focus activities on Wikidata and on GLAM training, following the needs of the community. For this reason, we have started to collaborate with Wikimedia Germany and specifically with the Wikidata team to offer our communities the best trainers. In 2020, we will improve these relationships and proceed with certifying competencies.

Program 4: Digital innovation & diversity

Across all levels of education, both innovation and diversity are necessary to ensure that we share knowledge openly and easily. In 2019, Program Education not only served students and educators in various educational systems but also enhanced how we served them.

To support knowledge equity, as advocated in the Wikimedia Movement’s strategy, we offered our educational content to students with disadvantages, aiming to reduce educational gaps. Digital innovation is closely allied with knowledge equity since it, too, has the potential to reduce knowledge gaps for disadvantaged students, just as it does in so many other contexts. We focused on two main issues confronting Swiss schools: students with learning problems and inclusivity among students.

First, we continued a project with Albinit that we began two years ago – a project that aims to identify how we can innovate for people with visual impairments. We completed the first phase in 2019. It defined a process for evaluating accessibility by having four testers check four projects in Italian (Wikipedia, Commons, Wikivoyage and Wikisource). The testers were students, and they encountered most of their problems when studying, mainly at the university level. Therefore, we applied the suggestions from project testing to also improve accessibility for students who encounter similar problems due to other learning challenges (e.g., dyslexia).

The second issue the chapter addressed was inclusivity, and for that, we integrated the activity of Wikipedia for Peace into the education program, changing the format of the camp a little bit. Together with SCI Switzerland, Wikipedia CH hosted the country’s second associated event, Wikipedia for Peace Switzerland 2019. We imposed some requirements so that participants were mainly immigrants in Europe, students or researchers. The restrictions also focused on reducing the gender gap and limiting lengthy travel. At the 2019 event, we had 13 editors, taught by three Wikimedians, with a high percentage of women and many coming from Eastern Europe. The participants were people seeking to expand their Wikimedia skills in ways that support a cause they are passionate about. They joined because they were invested in a particular cause, and they wanted to share it with like-minded people.

B4.Progress toward the plan

When compared to the proposal for 2019, we partly met our objectives. Some events and activities were put on hold to allow more time to meet the ideas expressed in the Wikimedia Movement’s 2030 strategy and the Swiss government’s new thinking about how the nation will meet the demands of technology. After reviewing other activities against the new Wikimedia CH Education Strategy, it seemed obvious that it was best to abandon them altogether. Instead, we chose to follow Recommendation 10: Prioritize Topics for Impact, from the Wikimedia Movement’s strategy.

We prioritized tertiary institutions, where we have mature relationships with many Swiss universities and, therefore, had a solid path to follow. For schools (primary and lower secondary institutions), we decided to reduce our programming for students themselves and, instead, worked toward projects that direct our attention to their educators. Our goal going forward is to offer teachers solutions that they have helped to define and can shape to fit their classroom needs.

Wikimedia CH also revised our approach to lifelong learning per the latest thinking of the Swiss Confederation. We evaluated how we could help to build up skills, certificates and qualifications that improve one’s employment prospects. The successful outcomes and feedback from Wikidata Zurich Training 2019, described in this report’s Program Education highlights, demonstrate that the demand exists for CET-related events, particularly in specialist areas such as Wikidata. We intend to launch new modules in 2020 that conform to our new approach.

B5.Lessons for our future work

Learning and sharing

We thought a great deal about the current state and future path of Program Education as we prepared a new strategic plan. Here are a few of this year’s lessons:

  • Build momentum by demonstrating continuity – To communicate Program Education’s strong values and positive results, it is essential to tie activities and events together. In 2019, we communicated to participants and members by describing the common themes of ongoing programming and demonstrating that our chapter was worth investing in for the long term. The best example of this lesson is the Zurich Wikidata Network, which has flourished as we’ve consistently provided three years of events centered around a shared purpose.
  • Give bottom-up organizing an overarching strategy – In the past, Program Education’s activities were proposed and launched via a mostly bottom-up approach. Volunteers, partners or community members proposed a project that met a specific need, but that need wasn’t necessarily tied to a predetermined strategic goal, which resulted in heterogeneity. We are excited that we defined a programmatic strategy in 2019 that is aligned with the recommendations of the global Wikimedia Movement. We have already begun giving more coherence to Program Education by discontinuing activities that do not fit the strategy and by enhancing and adding to activities that do fit.
  • Carve a path for Education between GLAM and Community – Our chapter’s Programs GLAM and Community are more established than Program Education. While there will always be overlap among the three, it is important to articulate a distinct vision and purpose. The new strategy allows us to explain why Program Education differs and, indeed, should differ. As we crafted and launched it in 2019, we found that the most difficult work lay in making the new strategy and its objectives understood. But we must be persistent in “defining our whys” – why Program Education has a new strategy, why it is distinct from GLAM and Community, and why Wikimedia brings value to Swiss education. The strategy has already produced many benefits in this regard, making it possible for us to speak credibly with major players in the educational field: teachers, schools, universities, training centers, etc.
Looking ahead

Even though 2019 was a pivotal year in defining our education strategy, the evolution of Program Education is still underway. We expect to continue shaping our path forward in 2020. There is no one-size-fits-all solution for the primary, secondary, VET, tertiary and CET systems. Instead, we must focus on the types of results we want to cultivate and let the desired outcomes guide our investments.

To this end, we are especially interested in building our programming around two of the Wikimedia Movement’s recommendations: Recommendation 7: Invest in Skills Development and Recommendation 8: Manage Internal Knowledge. Specifically, we intend to invest more in train-the-trainer activities that allow professionals to enhance their skills and then apply them in ways that share knowledge with a wider audience of students and other professionals. We expect to accomplish two goals at once. First, we will offer the CET community ways to build up their lifelong skills by becoming trainers. Second, we will expand Program Education’s impact by making “the internal knowledge of the Movement easy to capture, discover, adapt and consume by all stakeholders to facilitate both individual skill development and growth in an equitable way across all communities,” as stated in Recommendation 8.

Furthermore, we intend to enhance our communication with community members, partners and Swiss education’s major players. We learned in 2019 that defining a strategy with stakeholder input was incredibly valuable but also a complicated endeavor, one that involved frequent and consistent messaging. Therefore, communication will be an essential strategic pillar in 2020.

Program Community

C1.Background and context

In 2019, Wikimedia CH implemented a new strategy for Program Community for the first time. The strategy divides activities into four strategic areas, which are also the categories used in this report:

  1. Community health – tending to the relationships we have built with longtime Wikipedians.
  2. Community building – motivating new volunteers to continue their involvement with our chapter.
  3. Community recruitment – attracting new people to our chapter and the Wikimedia Movement.
  4. International collaboration – reaching out to and working with other chapters and international groups committed to supporting free and unbiased knowledge.

We stressed the first two areas this year because we were witnessing a decline in volunteers. We wanted to ensure that we retained the institutional knowledge of our experienced members as well as the enthusiasm of both new and experienced members. Therefore, we added events that showed our appreciation. We gave medals of honor to people who had been members for a certain number of years. And among our colleagues in Switzerland’s Italian-speaking region, those who made outstanding contributions to Wikimedia were awarded a Wikiricci (Wikihedgehog). The trophy is modeled after the Wikihowl that is awarded for member successes in the German-speaking area.

Our member management also benefited a great deal by the hire of Outreach & Communication Manager Kerstin Sonnekalb. In a multilingual country such as Switzerland, good member management is crucial so that we can respect and engage the various linguistic communities and cultural interests that crisscross our country and spread across our borders. Kerstin is, for example, reviving the somewhat outmoded press mailing list, transforming it into an operational tool. She is removing outdated contacts and introducing filters by media type (e.g., newspaper, magazine, online), language (i.e., the four major languages in Switzerland: English, French, German and Italian), job title (e.g., editor in chief, journalist, freelancer) and the locality or region covered. It may be considered basic work, but that is what makes it fundamental to our success.

Limiting our activities and events to only Swiss citizens is quite discriminatory. Switzerland’s linguistic regions extend into Italy, France, Germany and Austria. A full 25% of the population are immigrants (2 million out of 8 million people) – 15% hail from Italy, 14% from Germany and 12% from Portugal. Because volunteer recruitment had been waning in years past, we made an effort in 2019 to develop targeted events and activities that met the needs of single linguistic or interest groups within our diverse citizenry. They are described in the next two sections of this report.


Wikimedia CH Community Management Plan 2019

C2.Highlight activities

In this section, we highlight two of this year’s Program Community activities. Both demonstrate how it is possible to build community and recruit new volunteers by nurturing a topic that already has grassroots support.

Noircir Wikipedia[edit]

Noircir Wikipedia (Making Wikipedia Blacker) seeks to add to Wikipedia more information about people and cultural elements from Africa and of African descent. The project stemmed from two volunteers who met at a 2018 workshop that was part of the Les sans pagEs project (described in this report’s list of additional program activities, which comes after this highlights section). These volunteers, who were seeking to improve female representation on Wikipedia, turned their attention to Black representation.

Throughout 2019, they held six workshops in Geneva (five on Wikipedia and one on Wikisource) and four in Paris (Wikipedia). Along with the two initiators, a core of three Genevan Wikipedians attended most of their local workshops, and eight new people were trained as contributors. Also, both of the Noircir Wikipedia founders attended the WikiConvention Francophone for the first time (the convention is described in the international collaboration section later in this report).

While we had not planned on supporting Noircir Wikipedia in 2019, we quickly realized it was a passionate and productive group of volunteers deserving of our support. The group has helped us boost community engagement by focusing on a topic of keen interest to the French-speaking region. Also, it has helped us move toward our objective of greater diversity and inclusion. Wikimedia CH will continue our support in 2020.


Specific metrics
Approximately five to ten participants per event participated and yielded the following combined results:

  • More than 100 articles created
  • More than 600 articles edited
  • More than 7,000 edits

From the Noircir Wikipedia list of past meetings, Outreach Dashboards are available for the 2019 events held on the following dates (click on a date to access the relevant Dashboard):
25 May | 1 June | 15–16 June | 3 July | 14 September | 21 September | 12 October | 2 November | 9 November | 7 December

Women for Wikipedia[edit]

Women for Wikipedia is an editing campaign dedicated to expanding the breadth and accuracy of Wikipedia’s information about Swiss women. It builds community around the topics of increasing gender equality and giving greater access to information about notable women. Wikimedia CH organizes the edit-a-thons in cooperation with Swiss Television and Radio (SRF for Schweizer Radio und Fernsehen) and the publishing house Ringier.

In 2019, Women for Wikipedia hosted two edit-a-thons in February and November. The November event ended up being one of the largest in Switzerland, resulting in dozens of new biographies on women. It was hosted at the SRF headquarters in Zurich but also involved SRF branch offices in Berlin, London, Washington, Johannesburg, Buenos Aires, Ontario and Moscow. Therefore, it contributed to international collaboration among the Wikimedia community. A handful of experienced Wikipedians supported new authors, all of them journalists.


Samples of media coverage:


  • On 6 February, 41 new articles were created.
  • On 7 November, 69 new articles were created.

C3.Additional program activities

In this section, we describe the categories of programming from the Community Management Plan. We illustrate our work in each by describing examples of our 2019 activities and events.

Program 1: Community health

Our first strategic category, community health, focused on supporting longstanding chapter members. Aside from awards and medals of honor, we celebrated by providing ways for the Wikipedians to spend time together and build comradery among their self-identified communities. At local brunch events around the country, we thanked volunteers and gave community members – who often only know each other online – valuable time for face-to-face networking.

Because of these brunches to support community health, our chapter helped to spawn many other events that celebrated and fostered community health. Here is one example: The New Year’s Brunch in Chiasso, Switzerland, hosted 15 Wikipedians from the Insubria group, which brings together members from the cross-border areas of Italy and Switzerland. The group met again on 19 January in Oleggio, Italy, at the CG Fanchini Civic Archaeological and Ethnographic Museum for an edit-a-thon about the museum and local culture. Metrics: The event included 14 editors who wrote articles and uploaded pictures for a total of 781 contributions to Wikimedia Commons, Wikipedia Italy, Wikidata, Wikivoyage and Wikitionary. The energetic Insubria group made other improvements to Wikimedia in 2019, as well, with a series of tours and edit-a-thons called In the Steps of Carlo Amoretti, mixing activities on Wikidata, Wikipedia, Wikivoyage and OpenStreetMap. The series focused on the 18th-century intellectual’s manuscript titled Journey from Milan to the three lakes Maggiore, Lugano and Como and the mountains that surround them.

Program 2: Community building

Community building is about making new volunteers feel welcome. One way we do this is by helping them to enhance their Wikimedia skills, which illustrates how Programs GLAM, Education and Community are all aligned with the Wikimedia Movement’s recommendations. With GLAMwikiCH Day in March (described in the Program GLAM section), representatives from GLAM institutions shared their needs in developing new skills. Special emphasis was placed on how Wikidata can support heritage institutions. The next day, a Wikidata workshop was held in Lausanne. Furthermore, the first-of-its-kind Wikidata Zurich Training 2019 (described in the Program Education section) was held to advance the community’s skills.

Another way we welcome new participants is by building ongoing series around themes that spark their interests. Many of the series already described do just that (e.g., Noircir Wikipedia and In the Steps of Carlo Amoretti). So too does the ongoing series of edit-a-thons at the City Library in Geneva, which celebrates and builds community for the city and surrounding areas. Geneva’s City Library hosted two events in 2019. The first was an editing session in January that concerned Lake Geneva’s boats and navigation. It was such a success that the librarians practically closed the library on our participants. So, a follow-up event in February focused on Lake Leman boats and navigation. These events are a great example of how our structured series can spawn further community engagement.

The second City Library event was an atelier focused on music. It followed on the heels of a feminist strike that took place the day before and, therefore, focused on female musicians and their expression through music. Les sans pagEs also held dozens of events in 2019 to increase women’s presence on Wikipedia. These events gave the community thematic coherence as they all centered around gender equality and were held in Geneva. They included 26 weekly meetups at the University of Geneva, with approximately 100 articles improved on French Wikipedia. Interest in one activity inspired follow-on activities that built community. For example, Les sans pagEs hosted the series Wikimercredis MAMCO to increase and improve Wikimedia information concerning female artists. When the series ended, the group used the Wikimercredis MAMCO format to launch the Wikimercredis musique project in the second half of 2019 to improve Wikimedia information about women in music. The series included three meetings in 2019 at the Association pour l’encouragement de la Musique impRovisée (AMR), Geneva's improvisational music school, where participants created 12 articles and improved 86 more.

At the same time, Wikimedia CH continued to support photographers with the program whereby we buy and lend out photo equipment to retain exsisting or acquire new volunteers. This program produced 18,000 new photos during 2019, and currently, it remains our most productive program.

Program 3: Community recruitment

Recruitment is closely aligned with community building. Engaging new volunteers (community building) can inspire them to invite their friends and become long-term members (community recruitment). We focused on partnering with like-minded groups so that we could cross-pollinate our communities.

For example, Castles Dossier is a collaboration with OpenStreetMap, an organization that has many volunteers who are also Wikimedia CH members or involved in other Wiki projects. The project creates better representations of Swiss castles and palaces on Wikipedia by supplementing the Wiki content with geographic information from OpenStreetMap, and it improves OpenStreetMap with Wikimedia information (data, articles and photos) at the same time. The two groups’ members benefit from networking opportunities, too. At the end of April, a working meeting took place at Lenzburg Castle, and participants created a register of castles for the Swiss cantons of Aargau and Zurich. The event was advertised in both communities, and we estimate that we reached around 2,000 people.

Another example of collaborating with like-minded groups included Art+Feminism, a nonprofit organization with a worldwide focus that seeks to directly address the inequality of gender in the arts on Wikipedia. Wikimedia CH spread the word about two community groups that participated in the 2019 Art+Feminism campaign. First, Who Writes His_tory? hosted five Art+Feminism edit-a-thons in 2019. On 27 March, the Les sans PagEs group hosted an Art+Feminism event along with Wikimedia CH’s longtime partner, the Bibliothèque d'art et d'archéologie (the art and archeology library in Geneva).

In September, Wikimedia CH participated in this year’s international Wiki Loves Monuments photo contest that celebrated historical monuments and heritage sites. From the contest, Wikimedia gained 1,799 new photos; go to the finalists’ web page to see examples of the beautiful images that volunteers created. To help build community, we honored Switzerland’s winners at our chapter’s New Year’s Brunch in January 2020.

Program 4: International collaboration
VSN Meeting Zurich

International collaborations are central to how the Swiss people operate, and Wikimedia CH is no exception. We routinely involve the chapters of border countries in our events and, in turn, publicize those chapters’ events and help our members attend them. In 2019, Wikimedia CH supported WikiCons for the French-, German- and Italian-speaking communities. We publicized and gave grants for our members to attend WikiConvention Francophone, the fourth-annual international event for French-speaking Wikipedians. Several Swiss contributors gave presentations: Gabriel, Gilliane, Baptiste and Mourad spoke and led discussions on topics ranging from how to teach pupils to edit on a smartphone, Swiss GLAM projects on Wikimedia, the issue of crafting high-quality articles and contributions in Senegal.

Wikimedia CH also supported WikiCon 2019 with promotions and funding for our members. The 10th-annual convention for the international German-speaking community was held in October in Wuppertal, Germany. Ten German-speaking members of Wikimedia CH attended. ItWikiCon2019, the Italian WikiCon that was to take place in November 2019, was canceled due to logistical issues. However, for the third year in a row, we lent our support to promote the event before it was canceled, and we intend to lend support to future events.

In addition to conventions outside the country, Wikimedia CH hosted the third-annual Volunteer Supporters Network in November. Members of the chapters from Austria, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Spain and Serbia joined us in Switzerland. Experts in community support discussed topics such as new editor retention and chapter–community relations.

C4.Progress toward the plan

As stated earlier, Wikimedia CH stressed community health and community building in 2019. In the years prior, our activities and events were less coordinated, focusing on the communities within linguistic regions and less on the bonds that could be formed within and across those regions. In 2019, it was appropriate for some of our events to continue serving the interests of Switzerland’s various linguistic regions. After all, they represent different cultures around which the citizens of Switzerland and border nations coalesce. So, for example, we continued supporting WikiCons for the various linguistic communities. What was different is that we created defined, targeted events and series that gave these communities long-lasting missions and ongoing shared experiences. Moreover, by following our new strategy, we built community nationally and internationally, supporting topics of interest that transcend linguistic differences.

We established and strengthened relationships with like-minded partner organizations, such as OpenStreetMap, to help common interests flourish. Our chapter also programmed ongoing series that maintained enthusiasm and participation among volunteers who have a passion for special interests, such as racial equality for volunteers of Noircir Wikipedia. Likewise, enthusiasts from the Italian-speaking region joined In the Steps of Carlo Amoretti, and enthusiasts from the French-speaking region joined the Geneva City Library ateliers.

Grouping the events into these ongoing series allowed us to define an overarching goal for each series, to give participating Wikipedians a sense of purpose and comradery and to connect the series goals to Program Community’s strategy. Consequently, we could more easily demonstrate the value of Wikimedia CH and the Wikimedia Movement.

C5.Lessons for our future work

Learning and sharing

Our chapter learned the following lessons while implementing the new Program Community strategy:

  • Tell a story – Our communications must explicitly describe how events and activities are interconnected so that we imbue a broader purpose that resonates with volunteers. The very act of describing the purpose also keeps our strategy top of mind so that we contribute to a coherent Program Community.
  • Invest for the long term – This lesson is a companion to the previous one. We should invest in series, supporting ongoing programming so that volunteers are not left unmoored after a one-off event.
  • Help people to find their own community – New and long-time volunteers alike need a sense of belonging. We can foster that feeling by honoring our volunteers (e.g., Wikiricci and Wikihowl awards) and thanking them (e.g., New Year’s Brunches). However, we must ultimately let people find their own way. Therefore, we must remain attuned to emerging interests and groundswells, such as Noircir Wikipedia growing out of Les sans pagEs, and throw our support behind them when it makes sense within our strategic framework.
Looking ahead

Next year, the objective is to stress community recruitment after having focused on retaining existing members in 2019. We plan to work with Program GLAM and Program Education to ensure successful recruitment. Many of our new volunteers will emerge from special interests. Few of them will join Wikimedia CH because of a deep-rooted need to support open knowledge but will, instead, pair their passion for a certain topic, such as fine art, with the desire to openly share that passion. So, all three of our chapter’s programmatic pillars must help in our recruitment efforts.

We plan to articulate a coherent recruitment strategy to all the chapter’s program managers, strictly align everyone’s work with this strategy and regularly share metrics to measure our success. New volunteers will receive consistent messaging and compelling outreach to maintain engagement.

Partnerships & Outreach

D1.Background and context

Wikimedia CH strives to be a trusted partner on issues concerning free, open and unbiased knowledge, nationally as well as internationally. In 2019, we began work on a new communication strategy that will help us promote a more consistent and compelling message to our audiences. The draft strategy was completed in 2019; the final version will be issued in early 2020. The strategy embraces the Wikimedia Movement 2030 strategy and will be a tremendous help in our outreach to our main stakeholders, partners and members. As mentioned at the beginning of the report, social media communication has been improved, and in just the last few months of 2019, when we increased our social media outreach, new audiences were reached. The News page on Wikimedia CH's new website is now regularly updated, and information flows from the site into our brand-new newsletter that is produced in four languages. In addition, our new database allows us to ask donors and other visitors to sign up for news, a nice way to stay in touch and to reach even more people.

All these activities contributed significantly to our annual plan’s objective of improving people’s top-of-mind awareness. Many people still don’t realize that there is an association behind Wikipedia and other Wiki projects. By focusing on improving our brand and outreach materials, we are poised to better explain who we are, what we stand for and why volunteers and partners might want to join our community.

Moreover, Wikimedia CH dedicated significant effort to reaching out to other foundations, associations and possible partners in Switzerland to align forces and possibly collaborate on projects or programs. Our close and regular contact with other chapters that speak the same languages as Switzerland ensured knowledge sharing and exchange.

What is more, on the political outreach and positioning front, our chapter participated in many exchanges in 2019 with the Free Knowledge Advocacy Group EU (FKAGEU). We also were involved in many events and activities with ParlDigi, which led to our participation at high-level meetings and our input on diverse topics concerning open knowledge in Switzerland. More and more, our chapter is recognized as being an important actor in our very specialized field and is frequently included in panel discussions and think tanks.

D2.Highlight activity

In this section, we highlight one of our more productive partnerships of 2019, exemplifying the type of work we do to advance the Wikimedia Movement nationally and internationally.

Expanding our partnerships with the EPFL[edit]

Wikimedia CH’s work in 2019 with the EPFL, the Swiss polytechnic in Lausanne, stands as one of our foremost examples of how one new contact can catalyze unforeseen new opportunities. From one new contact with EPFL’s Senior Philanthropy Officer, we made four further connections that led to or are likely to lead to exciting new collaborations with the university, especially for Programs GLAM and Education.


First, we met with Dr. Alain Dufaux, the expert responsible for digitalizing the archives of the Montreux Jazz Festival (read the details in this report’s GLAM section). We learned a great deal from Dr. Dufaux, and we defined a project with the archive (GLAM + Wikidata) that will be implemented in 2020.

Second, at the philanthropy officer’s suggestion, we joined a 50/50 fundraising event in May that allowed us to meet EPFL’s Vice President of Education, Pierre Vandergheynst, for the first time. And third, we talked with relevant staff about LEARN, EPFL’s new Center for Learning Sciences. LEARN aims to contribute to excellence in Swiss education and to the digital transformation of society. We are pursuing future projects via both relationships.

Fourth, we met the current and future presidents of the EPFL student association. We’re exploring (a) ways to facilitate edit-a-thons for EPFL students and (b) the possibility of an EPFL data group that would allow EPFL students to work on Wikidata and Open Data projects. We already conducted some pilot workshops in 2019 and will be evaluating how to pursue this partnership further and possibly extend the initiative to other universities.

These new relationships are especially welcome as we invest more heavily in skills development, per the Wikimedia Movement’s 2030 strategy. As explained in the Program GLAM section, our community has explicitly asked for more training to allow GLAM staff members to contribute to Wiki projects. Wikimedia CH is committed to preparing GLAM staff and, indeed, all our community members for the digital and technical revolutions that institutes of learning and workplaces are currently facing and must embrace.

In 2019, we continued the close collaboration between Programs GLAM and Education to advance the Wikidata skills of GLAM institutions and our community. This work will continue in 2020. Furthermore, our chapter took steps in 2019 to expand the Zurich Wikidata Network to other parts of Switzerland. The 2020 hackathon will be in Lausanne, and the EPFL will collaborate with us to produce it. The relationships we have built with EPFL officials and students will be vital to these projects and more.

D3.Additional program activities

In this section, we describe the types of outreach we engage in and give examples of our partnerships under each type.

Program 1: International outreach

Our international activities include collaboration with cross-border Wikimedia chapters to have greater impact and to pool resources and projects.

Wikimedia CH is part of FKAGEU, which is an advocacy group for Europe’s Wikimedia chapters. It articulates clear and coherent positions on major legislative and political changes of relevance to the Wikimedia Movement. Over the last year, as part of FKAGEU, Wikimedia CH has been engaged in EU-level public policy activities. While Switzerland is not part of the European Union, the country is influenced by the EU’s legislative process. In 2019, we saw the conclusion of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market. Wikimedia ensured that non-for-profit platforms that host user-generated content, such as Wikipedia, remain exempt from new content filtering rules (as per Article 17) and can largely continue to exist as they currently do. On the proactive side, Wikimedia, together with Communia and Europeana, successfully proposed a "public domain safeguard" in the new European law. It will ensure that faithful digital copies of public domain content will remain in the public domain across the bloc. After the adoption of the Directive, the group turned its attention toward transposition on the national level. Together with Communia, it has written and published transposition guidelines to help national activists. As Switzerland is not part of the EU, our chapter did not take part in this process.

Emblem of the United Nations

In addition to the Directive, Wikimedia is following up on the TERREG Regulation, a proposed European law that would require online platforms to quickly identify and remove terrorist content. As Wikipedia is covered by the new provisions, we want to make sure that judicial oversight, transparency and protections against over-deletions are enshrined. Furthermore, after the European Parliament elections, the FKAGEU, together with national chapters, reached out to well over 200 elected members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and followed up with personal meetings or email exchanges with more than 40 of them.

Another significant part of Wikimedia CH's international outreach concerns consistent collaboration with neighboring chapters to implement our programmatic activities. We can point to many different cross-border collaborations for 2019. They include GLAMwikiCH Day and the two DACH GLAM meetings described in the Program GLAM section. They also include the Wikidata Zurich Training 2019 described in Program Education, which involved expert trainers from Germany, Poland and Switzerland. In Program Community, we described our support of neighboring countries’ WikiCons.

We contributed both financially and substantively to the French- and German-speaking Wikicons; members of our Swiss community attended and lent their expertise to the conventions. What is more, our chapter is very active in driving WikiFranca forward. It is a partnership between francophone Wikimedia chapters and affiliated working groups, and we are contributing to its international success. The fact that cross-border collaborations are integrated into the entirety of this report illustrates how deeply rooted these collaborations are in the fiber of our chapter.

In 2019, Wikimedia CH also expanded our collaborations to involve a wider Wikiverse by working with Argentina’s chapter. Based upon their WikiDerechosHumanos efforts, we are working to replicate the format and join with WikiFranca under the name Projet Droits Humains. The project involves Wikimedia Argentina, WikiFranca, the Wikimedia Foundation and the Office of the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights. It seeks to make Wikimedia projects into tools that can help people to understand and champion their human rights. After the Wikimedia Foundation and UN Human Rights launched #WikiforHumanRights, Wikimedia CH funded Switzerland’s first event of the project, which will take place on 27 February 2020.

Program 2: National outreach

Our national outreach activities focus on making an impact on Swiss policies that affect open and free knowledge.

For example, Parldigi is the Parliamentary Group on Digital Sustainability, founded in 2009, that promotes the digitally sustainable use of knowledge in Switzerland through parliamentary initiatives, dinner events, open hearings, media releases and blog entries. Parldigi’s members include over 50 national and state councilors from the SP, FDP, SVP, CVP, Greens, GLP, BDP and EVP parties. As one of the sponsors of the organization, Wikimedia CH can contribute to the agenda and discussion topics and can attend various high-level meetings and gatherings. Our chapter participated in Parldigi’s 10th anniversary celebration in June (read Parldigi’s media release; view videos and photos of the celebration). One of our board members even secured a speaking slot at the Parliamentarian dinner in December 2019.

Via Parldigi and with Wikimedia CH’s contribution, a second parliamentary advance (parlamentarischer Vorstoss) was submitted on 25 September to establish a directory that makes federal images free and easily accessible. At this time, only the German version of the document is posted online; access the German version of both the advance and the parliament’s reply.

Program 3: Collaboration with like-minded associations
SCI Logo

Collaborating with like-minded organizations allows all of us to speak with a louder, unified voice and be more effective in achieving our goals. Therefore, we partner with a multitude of organizations that advocate for the same positions we do regarding open access to digital knowledge. During 2019, there were many interactions with existing partners but also first encounters with new ones; they include the following:

OSM Logo
  • SCI Switzerland – We collaborated with SCI Switzerland to host the Wikipedia for Peace event in April and May (described in the Program Education section).
  • OpenStreetMap – We met with board members in Zurich to explore different ways to continue our longtime collaboration, discussing the possibility of co-working on projects (i.e., members of our two communities working on each other’s projects). We signed a memorandum of understanding to outline a framework for future collaboration.
  • EPFL – As described in the highlights section, we made four new contacts this year, creating partnerships and exciting new projects, such our work with the Montreux Jazz Archives as well as several ateliers that we developed together with AGEPoly (the student association)
  • IFRC – Red Cross members collaborated with us by attending a Wikidata workshop, and we will collaborate on new events in 2020.
  • DINACon - Wikimedia CH attended DINAcon 2019, a conference on digital sustainability held in Bern. About 200 experts and opinion leaders from politics, business, the public sector, nonprofits and open source communities gathered. Diego Hättenschwiler, a representative of Wikimedia CH and longtime Wikipedian, was one of the session speakers. He explained how OpenStreetMap could be linked to Wikipedia and Wikidata. (Watch the video recap of DINAcon 2019 on YouTube.)
  • Foraus - At a brainstorming meeting for the Swiss National Library, we met the founder of Foraus, a Swiss think tank on foreign policy, and discussed the potential for collaborative projects. It led to Wikipedia in Science: An Introduction to the Growing Use of Digital Platforms, which was a meeting about how digital platforms, and particularly Wikimedia projects, offer industries opportunities to gain practical insights and give workers new skills for the digital age. Wikimedia CH representative Diego Hättenschwiler spoke.

D4.Progress toward the plan

We met the objectives of our proposal for 2019. The name Wikipedia is strongly associated with open and free knowledge, so we’re fortunate to be able to leverage the Movement’s positive brand image. And our 2019 activities reinforced its principles.

We continued to work closely with FKAGEU to ensure coordinated action on the EU Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market. We maintained our successful Parldigi collaboration, giving us ongoing access to national and state councilors in Swiss government. Through efforts such as these, we helped to impact public policy. At the same time, we continued to strengthen our collaborations with the Wikiverse, including the Wikimedia Foundation and neighboring chapters. Our longstanding relationships with institutions across Switzerland were deepened and enhanced, as well. For example, our new relationships with EPFL officials and its student association have furthered a close partnership that we have had with the polytechnic for years. Finally, though our new communication strategy is not yet final, it is already strengthening our outreach efforts by giving coherence and resonance to our outreach messages and improving communication channels.

D5.Lessons for our future work

Learning and sharing

The two lessons that we share here apply across our chapter. They emerged just as often during our work in Programs GLAM, Education and Community as they did when working on partnerships and outreach.

  • Stick to the core messages – We may have always known that high-quality, consistent messaging was important, but this lesson was particularly apparent in 2019. This lesson was reinforced when we defined a more coherent Program Education strategy so that we could speak credibly with major players in education. Also, it was reinforced when we developed a new communications strategy. Moreover, the lesson was apparent when we pursued Program Community objectives to better retain and build what had been a dwindling membership. For these reasons and more, we focused on consistently promoting our brand. We increased our engagement on social media, updated our press list to allow us to target messages to the most appropriate audiences and retooled our newsletter. Throughout our work, this lesson was emphasized again and again: stick to the core messages.
  • Be open to new opportunities – As with any organization that seeks new members and partners, we must always be open to new opportunities that present themselves. In 2020, Program Community will shift its focus to recruitment. But recruitment efforts are not confined to Program Community alone. Chapter staff and volunteers across our portfolio must recognize when nascent initiatives and one-off events can grow into more exciting and long-lasting projects. Program Community staff will routinely train and measure the success of all chapter activities because building and expanding our community is the responsibility of every one of us.
Looking ahead

In 2020, we look forward to finalizing and implementing our new communication strategy and crafting a new outreach strategy. We will also develop new materials, such as an organizational brochure, that clearly and consistently communicate our brand. Finally, we’ll offer training to help chapter staff meet brand compliance guidelines and measure brand recognition. The materials and training will equip Wikimedia CH’s leaders with tools that improve people’s top-of-mind awareness about the people behind Wikipedia.

Relationships that we fostered in 2019, such as those with members of FKAGEU, Parldigi, EPFL and WikiFranca, will continue into 2020 and beyond. It is essential to the health of our chapter and the Wikimedia Movement that we build reputable, long-term partnerships that cultivate institutional knowledge and recognition in national and international arenas. It is the only way that we can speak loudly enough to sustain and expand free, unbiased digital knowledge and inspire change when needed.

Revenues received during this period (6 month for progress report, 12 months for impact report)[edit]

Please use the exchange rate in your APG proposal.

Revenue source Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Cumulative Anticipated ($US)* Cumulative ($US)* Explanation of variances from plan
Exchange Rate 1,00498 1,00498
Membership fees 2 060,00 13.321,77 1.805,46 1.800,00 18.987,23 19.081,79 New membership fees and increasing membership requests because of more outreach have brought more income.
APG (Annual Plan Grant) 87.500,00 0,00 0,00 62.500,00 150.000,00 150.747,00 150.747,00
WMF Fundraising Costs 0,00 35.342,81 253,65 122.850,00 158.446,46 120.597,60 159.235,52 WMCH's fundraising target has been increased in 2019 as agreed during the year which explains the higher fund-raising costs.
Donations WMCH 179.279,70 84.937,74 74.931,77 1.197.150,58 1.536.299,79 0,00 1.543.950,56 As explained in our report above, we changed fundraising systems and databases and also conducted our first email marketing campaign in Q4. On top of that, we spent a lot of time with potential partners and donors which showed first results.
Pro Bono / In-kind donations 1.006,09 8.884,65 746,55 4.181,27 14.818,56 10.049,80 14.892,36 ID est avocats (legal advice); TranslatMe (translations); and many more. We are always trying to secure as much pro-bono as we can!
Income of courses (Conferences, Trainings) 0,00 0,00 0,00 We have not run any courses so far; this is not part of our main fundraising strategy for the moment.
Fiscal Sponsorship WLM 500,00 500,00 0,00 502,49 Wikialpenforum May 2019
TOTAL 425.449,12 251.601,08 77.737,43 1.388.481,85 2.143.269,48 633.137,40 2.153.942,96 As explained in our report above, we changed fundraising systems and databases and also conducted our first email marketing campaign. On top of that, we spent a lot of time with potential partners and donors which showed first results. Our fundraising efforts are thus much higher than foreseen. A very encouraging result!

|} * Provide estimates in US Dollars

Spending during this period (6 month for progress report, 12 months for impact report)[edit]

Please use the exchange rate in your APG proposal.

Expense Currency Budgeted Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Cumulative Budgeted ($US)* Cumulative ($US)* Percentage spent to date Explanation of variances from plan
Exchange Rate 1,00498 1,00498
PROGRAM 1 - GLAM 120.000,00 10.058,60 33.913,81 23.559,93 40.695,11 108.227,45 120.597,60 108.766,42 90,19 The dedicated landing page for GLAM could unfortunately not be built in 2019 as refreshing and re-creating the general webpage took longer than expected.
PROGRAM 2 - Education CHF 140.000,00 13.043,22 17.005,27 50.180,08 39.300,01 119.528,58 140.697,20 120.123,83 85,38 The dedicated landing page for Education could unfortunately not be built in 2019 as refreshing and re-creating the general webpage took longer than expected. Equally, the webiste for sharing tools for teachers could not be set up because of a human resource bottleneck; the same applies to dedicated outreach and communication material.
PROGRAM 3 - Community CHF 101.500,00 17.141,60 10.022,33 12.023,46 34.746,89 73.934,28 102 005,47 74.302,47 72,84 Several programs for which money was reserved for in 2019, were actually not carried out because on one hand the community groups responsible for it used money from other sources or did not move forward with their project; on the other hand, WMCH again saw a large drop in requests for micro grants. The Italian WikiCon for which money was foreseen did also not take place. It remains very difficult to predict the exact spent from one year to the other in this budget line.
Program 4: International and National (Public) Relations CHF 68.000,00 5.472,20 16.689,43 23.611,47 10.567,08 56.340,18 68.338,64 56.620,75 82,85 The friendraising event in the Italian speaking part of Switzerland had to be cancelled due to time and human resource constraints. Money reserved for partnership building and other outreach activities was not spent as a whole as WMCH did not have a Communication/Outreach Manager for several months.
Staff Wages & Expenses CHF 644.100,00 189.623,77 167.686,93 143.332,47 141.904,75 642.547,92 647.307,62 645.747,81 99,76 As we managed to find a good balance between outsourced consultants/experts and hired staff, we were able to maintain our expenses as planned. Included here are travel passes in CH, staff training and staff search.
Operations (excludes staff and programs) CHF 201.000,00 46.044,11 62.952,99 36.772,10 100.864,78 246.633,98 202.000,98 247.862,22 122,70 Falling into this category: Storage space, phone lines, auditing company BDO, Raisenow (fundraising), External experts for accounting, admin., fundraising, marketing, IT expertise, Salesforce (CMS)
TOTAL CHF 1.274.600,00 281.383,50 308.270,76 289.479,51 368.078,62 1.247.212,39 1.280.947,51 1.253.423,51 97,85 We are very proud that our foreseen budget was so well respected in 2019. There is no significant under or over-spent.

* Provide estimates in US Dollars


Is your organization compliant with the terms outlined in the grant agreement?[edit]

As required in the grant agreement, please report any deviations from your grant proposal here. Note that, among other things, any changes must be consistent with our WMF mission, must be for charitable purposes as defined in the grant agreement, and must otherwise comply with the grant agreement.

Are you in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations as outlined in the grant agreement? Please answer "Yes" or "No".

  • YES

Are you in compliance with provisions of the United States Internal Revenue Code (“Code”), and with relevant tax laws and regulations restricting the use of the Grant funds as outlined in the grant agreement? Please answer "Yes" or "No".

  • YES


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Resources to plan for measurement[edit]

Resources for storytelling[edit]