Grants:IdeaLab/Creating a Wikimedia project for scientist
What is the problem you're trying to solve?
Scientists face the great difficulty of generating an increasing amount of knowledge and techniques without a centralized organization. They publish many advanced papers and reviews in peer-reviewed journals that are impossible to understand for the non-expert individual (not to mentioned that the access to those papers can be really expensive).
When you try to study for the first time an advanced topic you have the following ressources: - University courses (including MOOC) that are often not specific enough, - Books that are expensive and often outdated, - Browsing thousands of papers/reviews (for instance on pubmed) that are usually too specific or difficult, - Reading the wikipedia article, which sadly is often incomplete and do not contain technical information. Plus, sadly one can never be sure of the accuracy, especially in advanced topic.
Therefore, humanity (yes, Humanity !) still lacks an intermediate way to learn and centralize advanced knowledge and techniques.
You also have the parallel issue that expert and scientist are not involved enough in Wikipedia, partially because they believe it lacks credibility.
What is your solution?
My idea (which may be not new ?) is to create a Wikimedia project for building science knowledge and how-to. It could be in cooperation with public research institutions (NIH, ERC, etc.) to attract scientist and certified the seriousness of the project. Although it would have to stay independant and be runned by the scientific community itself, like wikipedia is run by the public community. The idea is to get the scientific community to build there own wiki common ressource. The content would be public but edited only by experts.
The process can only be a success if it requires a non-anonymous login with institutional background information (university, lab, speciality) and vetting. This would allow for high quality content, editing and peer-review by the scientific community itself. The idea would be to have it porous with wikipedia such as the content, architecture and process can be in the same style and easily transferable to wikipedia (interlink, possibility to edit wikipedia with this account, etc.). This would encourage scientist and expert to contribute to high quality content of wikipedia (vulgarization).
The project would also includes technical articles (how-to, protocols) and discussions on advanced unstable topics (e.g. bioinformatics). This would ensure a community-driven behavior such as scientist come to give advice and ask questions.
Those kind of community and ressources start to appear in the scientific community (see synapse, researchgate, etc.) but a clear central website (like wikipedia or facebook are for the general public) hasn't emerge yet.
Who will you be doing outreach with?
About the idea creator
Expand your idea
Would a grant from the Wikimedia Foundation help make your idea happen? You can expand this idea into a grant proposal.
No funding needed?
Does your idea not require funding, but you're not sure about what to do next? Not sure how to start a proposal on your local project that needs consensus? Contact Chris Schilling on-wiki at I JethroBT (WMF) (talk · contribs) or via e-mail at cschillingwikimedia.org for help!