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Grants:Conference/GMG/Wikimedia CEE Meeting 2022/Report

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Report accepted
This report for a Conference Grant approved in FY 2021-22 has been reviewed and accepted by the Wikimedia Foundation.
  • To read the approved grant submission describing the plan for this project, please visit Grants:Conference/GMG/Wikimedia CEE Meeting 2022.
  • You may still comment on this report on its discussion page, or visit the discussion page to read the discussion about this report.
  • You are welcome to Email conferencegrants at wikimedia dot org at any time if you have questions or concerns about this report.

Goals and Objectives[edit]


Generally speaking, the goals of the Wikimedia CEE Meeting 2022 are:

  • promotion of free knowledge and free access of knowledge for the wider population and audience in the countries where the organizations operate,
  • strengthening the cooperation capacities and improving the collaboration between different user groups/ organizations no matter the geographical or cultural distances,
  • proving help and support for small-size user groups and organizations, encouraging them to expand their scope of work and international collaboration,
  • exchanging knowledge and experience in terms of Wikimedia Projects and activities concerning those projects and GLAM-oriented activities,
  • promotion of the idea of establishing collaboration and mutual projects or activities between groups that have no such experience,
  • improving problem solving skills and techniques for avoiding non-friendly behaviour on Wikimedia Projects and actual activities related to those projects,
  • share of ideas and experience about team building capacities, communication and social skills, as well as organizational and logistic skills.

General goals listed in our grant proposal are much connected with the developing of the program. Program committee members, led by experienced Kiril Simeonovski, developed a program with topics get from the community survey that was launched while planning the conference (17-23 May 2022) to identify the needs of the communities across the region. The main topics were divided into: GLAM & Partnerships, Education, Community Engagement, Sharing & Learning, Advocacy & Wikipedia, Strategy & Governance, Capacity Development, Diversity, Content Quality, and Research & Technology.


Objective Outcome Status
*to have at least one participant from the expected countries While we didn't get participants from several countries due to visa issues, we are proud to say that most of the planned countries had their representative at the conference. Done
*to have prepared speakers/ presenters, who will cover the topics from which the participants can benefit All speakers / presenters were well prepared. Many times the conversation on the topic continued after the session was finished, at the coffee break, at the lunch time and even after the hours of the program. Done
*to have shared ideas and motivated participants to apply what has been learned, and start the presented projects as new projects in their communities The ideas and the projects were shared even after the sessions. Done
*to initiate new collaboration and strengthen existing work between the Wikimedia affiliations from CEE region *from the post-conference survey. The post-conference survey showed that a large number of participants expressed willingness to initiate new collaboration on projects with new partners-conference attendees, The participants gave numbers of potential collaborators for future collaboration, and the number varies from 2 to 6 future possible collaborations with participants of the Conference in Ohrid. This shows that the participants indeed shared ideas and were actively involved in the lectures/ presentations/ workshops and new ideas were initiated due to the conference content and its participants. Done
*to connect Macedonian Wikimedians to other CEE communities in order to develop the Macedonian community We are proud of our volunteers at the conference, our employee, GLAM Macedonia members and Wiki Club members, who accomplished gigantic tasks at pre-conference and the conference days. Most of them connected with the foreign Wikimedians for the first time, as they haven't been on international conference before. We can say that the volunteers are now highly motivated to continue with the Wikimedia projects, and to start a new ones. Done

Outcomes and Impact[edit]

Thanks for bringing value back to the Wikimedia movement by sharing in this report. Everything you learned during your project is useful knowledge to offer future Wikimedians planning similar work.

In this first section you are asked to reflect on your initial goals and the impact the event had on your community. Remember there is no right or wrong answer. Even if your goals have changed over time, or the impact was different than what you expected. Feel free to share your long or short answer - we are happy to hear whatever you have to share.

  • Did your event have any impact that you did not expect, positive or negative?
We think that the events was a good chance for the participants to work together, share ideas and knowledge in person, after long period of on-line gatherings and conferences. This was one of the first big events that were held in person after the end of the Covid-19 pandemics and we are glad that we did everything to make it possible. We are also very happy with the successful translation that was provided during the conference, something that is done for the first time in any Wiki conference. We hope that this practice will be continued in the future, and even improved. One aspect that GLAM Macedonia is especially proud of is that the event was excellently covered by the nation-wide media. The conference was in details covered by most of the major web portals and news portals in Macedonia. Additionally, local and nation-wide TV stations covered the events in details. The national MTV covered the event, the report and the interview about the event given by Zhana Strkovska from GLAM Macedonia and Ivana Madzarevik from Wikimedia Serbia, was even in the central news programme. Our media coordinator Tatjana Gogoska was responsible for this task and she did the job excellently.
  • Please tell us about the top 2-3 innovative (new to you and your community) or things you tried this conference.
As we have stated previously, organizing an event of that scale and having organized and successfully implemented translation of the lectures was a new thing for us and the Movement in general. The feedback we got was very positive and we are glad that we managed to provide something that will be of benefit to all participants. Another thing that we are proud of is that we managed, even with all difficulties we had, to bring together participants of various different countries. Having in mind the fact that there is a war (as of 2022) in Europe, and its impact over the international travel costs and schedules, we successfully overcome all difficulties and tried to bring as many people on the conference as we could.
  • Were there any significant changes from the initial grant proposal?
Yes. When we compared the initial grant proposal and when the preparations were in the final stage, we figured out that the expenses for issuing visas for various countries were significantly higher. Additionally, the international travel costs increased significantly two months prior the conference due to international price increase of tickets (due to the economic crisis that hit Europe).
  • What do you think will be the long term impact of this conference?
We expect that the lectures that were held during the conference deepened the knowledge of the participants and they will further on spread the ideas among their own native communities. Moreover, the lightening talks that were presented during the conference may motivate new projects among other communities, since the point of the share of the ideas was exactly that - share ideas, share knowledge and create more content. Additionally, the HUB was also presented to the participants, a new thing in the Movement and we think that it will continue to grow and expend its activities.
  • Do your best to estimate the number of attendees in your event that have never attended any Wikimedia event before. How were you able to support and engage this group?
The number of attendees that have never attended any Wikimedia event before, as we know is ~10 (without the GLAM Macedonia volunteers). They did very well, established contacts with other experienced Wikimedians, and always there was someone to answer their questions on how to continue or how to start an affiliation in their country, for example.
  • Do your best to estimate the number of participants who have been involved in Wikimedia activities for more than 5 years. How were you able to support and engage this group?
The experienced Wikimedians, involved in Wikimedia activities for more than 5 years are people who already know how to the most out of such live events. This group was engaged in program giving lectures, answering the questions from newbies, helping with ideas, etc.

Learning and next steps[edit]

Conferences and events do not always go according to plan! Please use this section considering the perspective of what future event organizers within our movement organizing a similar style conference can learn. Make sure to include lessons around work with external/ internal partners; your communication efforts; your work with the community and volunteers etc.

  • What would you do differently next time and why? Please share with us if there's anything you wouldn't do or something future organizers should avoid.
Next time, in case we have a chance to organize an event of that scale (or bigger), we would definitely find venues closer to the city itself (since that was the biggest feedback remark of the participants). The hotel and venues were close, but the center of the city was not so close. This could be OK for the group to stay together at the conference hours, but at the free evenings, one should get a taxi in order to visit the city parts. Moreover, deepening on the location of the event (geographical) we would recommend warmed time period for organizing the event for the sake of avoiding cold days. Even some of the participants were swimming in the Ohrid Lake in October. The next time we will be definitely requesting more money/ assets for administrative things (visas) since these things caused a minor unwanted difficulty for the organizers.
  • Was there any non-financial support that the Wikimedia Foundation could have provided that would have better supported you in achieving your goals?
Looking back at the conference preparation stage and the conference itself, we can say that the Foundation offered everything that is in their disposal to facilitate the planning and realization process. Besides the material, the Foundation offered help and provided guidelines in terms of giving tips on how to plan the venues and the organization itself. There were many questions we, as organizers, didn't know how to proceed, and Chen was very helpful about those things.
  • What would you recommend on a local and/or regional level as the best next step to leverage your success and momentum? (Please consider potential new allies and partners; internal wiki collaborations; future projects etc. We don't expect you to necessarily do those, we are only looking for more ideas from your own perspective.)
Always put the movement goals and ideas first. Guide the conference towards deepening knowledge, share of ideas among community and support diversity among the Foundation's movement. Try to focus on providing a good support for the participants to discuss the availability of theoretical and practical implementation of ideas and projects.
  • Does your organizing team / affiliate / user group have any plans to follow up with your attendees in the future or support efforts related to the outcomes of this conference within your community?
Yes, we want to be in contact with our attendees and see whether and to what degrees the lectures/ workshops/ talks were of benefit to the community and the development of the Wikimedia projects.
  • Please add any 3 operational recommendations for future events organizers.
The three operation recommendations for the future organizers are: calculate well in advance the administrative fees and travel costs (visas and similar things if it is possible, also participant who is represent of one country, could live in other country, which happen to us), stick to neutrality and maintain neutral working atmosphere during the conference so to avoid misunderstandings and conflicts, provide translation services for the participants in order to spread the message and the ideas of the lectures.

Financial documentation[edit]

This section describes the grant's use of funds

Budget table

Please list all project expenses in a table here, with descriptions. Review the instructions here. These expenses should be listed in the same format as the budget table in your approved submission so that anyone reading this report may be able to easily compare budgeted vs. actual expenses.

Category Item description Budget Final cost Currency Notes
Travel International travel 31,131€ 32,009 EUR
Local travel 3,200€ (2,800€ + 400€ from Learning day) 4,209 EUR
Visa fees 600€ 1,831 EUR Visa fees + notary + DHL and post office costs
Accommodation costs Hotel rooms 20,500€ 14,192 EUR
Catering 6,000€ 5,250 EUR
Venue costs Conference venue 1,200€ 1,317 EUR
Coffee breaks 2,160€ 2,160 EUR
Technical support 900€ 1,770 EUR Including equipment for translators
Video recording 500€ 600 EUR
Other costs Participant packet and local information 1,200€ 1,200 EUR
Name tags, banner, etc. 500€ 500 EUR
Saturday night dinner 2,400€ 2,100 EUR
City tour 150€ 150€ EUR
Translators 1,640€ 1,650 EUR Honorarium for 2 translators + taxes
Learning Day Accommodation, meals, coffee breaks 1,500€ 2,674 EUR There was a CEE Hub meeting also at the same time, we ended up with more persons arrived previous day
COVID-19 related expenses Masks 180€ 180 EUR
Tests antigen 480€ 480 EUR
Tests PCR 681€ / EUR We had no need of any PCR test
Miscellaneous expenses / 1,022 EUR Including water bottles for participants, extra high bank fee, etc.
TOTAL General 74,922€ 73,294€ EUR

If you have any tips or insights on creating a budget or allocating funds, please feel welcome to share!

Summary of funding

Total project budget (from your approved grant submission): 84,222 EUR

Total amount requested from WMF (from your approved grant submission): 74,922 EUR

Total amount spent on this project (this total should be the total calculated from the table above):

Total amount of WMF grant funds spent on this project: 73,294 EUR

Are there additional sources of revenue that funded any part of this project? List them here. Yes, Internet Connection was in kind donation from the hotel, two venues for pre-conference day were in kind donation from the hotel, one conference days venue was in kind donation from the hotel, participation from Ohrid municipality to promo packet with printed materials about Ohrid, a person from Red Cross Ohrid was present all three conference days giving masks and doing antigen tests for participants on demand.

Remaining funds

Are there any grant funds remaining?

Answer YES

Please list the total amount (specify currency) remaining here. (This is the amount you did not use, or the amount you still have after completing your grant.) 1,628 EUR

The funds remaining from this grant in the amount of 1,628 EUR were deducted from another grant payment for Grants:Programs/Wikimedia Community Fund/2023 GLAM Macedonia General Support Grant.


Optional - Event Evaluation Toolkit - In this page you can find a list of basic questions that the Wikimedia Foundation uses to evaluate large movement events like Wikimania and other regional and thematic events. Feel free to use any part of these questionnaires to evaluate your own event. You will find: Registration Questions; Post-event questions for participants and Follow-up questions for participants.

Anything else[edit]