Jump to content

Grants:PEG/WM NL/Professionalization

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
This submission to the Wikimedia Foundation Grants Program was funded in the fiscal year 2010-11. This is a grant to an organization.

IMPORTANT: Please do not make changes to this page now. They will be reverted.

  • This project has been funded, completed, and a project report has been reviewed and accepted by WMF Staff.
  • To review a list of other funded submissions by fiscal year, please visit the Requests subpage, and to review the WMF Grants Program criteria for funding please visit the Grants:Index.


Legal name of chapter
Vereniging Wikimedia Nederland
Grant contact name
Lodewijk Gelauff
Grant contact user-name or e-mail
lodewijk at wmnederland.nl
Grant contact title (position)
vice president
Full project name
Professionalization Wikimedia Nederland
Amount requested
EUR 142,500 (75% of EUR 190,000) = ~175,000 USD; Approved US$45,000 for each of two years as revenue forgiveness
Provisional target start date
July 2010
Provisional completion date
July 2012


During the 2009 / 2010 annual fundraiser, Wikimedia Nederland (WMNL) and the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) embarked on a pilot project regarding the role of the chapters in the fundraising process. Wikimedia Nederland served as the primary fundraising entity for Wikimedia in the Netherlands and took on a number of responsibilities connected to this role. For this pilot, WMNL and WMF agreed that 75% of the total fundraiser revenue raised by Wikimedia Nederland would be transferred to the Wikimedia Foundation.

Now, Wikimedia Nederland kindly asks the Wikimedia Foundation to let off this sum of EUR 142,500 (75%), within the framework of the chapters grants process, in order to allow for proper professionalization of the chapter and its increasing responsibilities. The Wikimedia Nederland board strongly believes that this investment will lead to sustainable growth in the chapter's outreach activities and fundraising efforts.

This document offers an overview of Wikimedia Nederland's work plan for 2010/2011. The chapter will be happy to clarify or provide more detailed information on any part of this proposal.

Overall project scope[edit]

Wikimedia Nederland has identified several opportunities to become more succesful, effective and efficient as an organization, and in this way be able to better support and help carry out the mission of the Wikimedia Foundation in the Netherlands. Wikimedia Nederland believes that to fully benefit from these opportunities, it needs to make the transition to a professional organization that has the knowledge, expertise and manpower required for effectively pursuing these opportunities.

The present request includes a non-exhaustive overview of programs that Wikimedia Nederland plans to execute in the first two years. It would, in our view, require a professionalization to carry out these programs to their full potential. We are convinced that in the Netherlands there are sufficient funding possibilities to make such a professionalization sustainable for Wikimedia Nederland, but we also believe that this would take time and would require a "kick start" to be successful.

Funding for this professionalization that would be sufficient to help WMNL through the first two years with an office and staff, would enable us to grow further, request external funding for future projects, raise funds more professionally and successfully, and effectively become self-sustainable. In the long run, this would lead to more projects, activities and presence in the Netherlands and a more sustainable organization.

Two-thirds of this grant would be used to help build up the organization in the first year, the remaining one-third for the second year. After this, the chapter should have become fully self-sustainable. This maturation should be reached through development of funding opportunities both from community donations and from governmental and non-governmental grants.

Overall project goal[edit]

The overall goal is to create a self-sustaining organization to:

  1. coordinate and increase the activities of the chapter
  2. support volunteers in their work for the chapter
  3. improve and coordinate fundraising

Budget breakdown[edit]

Below you can find a breakdown of the relevant expenses as expected for the first 12 months of the two year period (July 2010 - June 2012). Amounts are given in euro since the money requested is already on our bank account, so double conversion would not add any value. All amounts are subject to approval by the General Assembly.

A summary of the expected relevant income and the first part of the grant is also given below. Additional projects are preferably launched with external funds, but some reallocation is not impossible. This does not include effects caused by the fundraising program, as those are hard to predict.

It is expected that ~67% of the total grant is used in the first year, and 33% in the second year.

Formal changes in the budget will be communicated to the Wikimedia Foundation. After one year (summer 2011) a re-evaluation and intermediate report will be made and submitted to the Wikimedia Foundation. If incomes increase for whatever reason (external funding, higher fundraising) or if planned programs require less or more effort/money this can be cause for adding/changing programs. These programs will be reported on through the regular chapter reports.

If less than 100% of the assigned grant has been used for professionalization by July 2012, the remainder will be transferred to the Wikimedia Foundation, or a timely application will be made for re-allocation.

Expected expenses first 12 months
Office costs
Office rent, service costs etc € 11,400.00
Communication costs € 600.00
Miscellaneous office supplies € 3,000.00
Startup € 10,000.00
Cleaning € 1,000.00
administration € 5,000.00
administration startup € 1,500.00
administration salaries € 1,700.00
Insurances € 5,000.00
manager € 40,000.00
fundraiser € 35,000.00
communication/program € 25,000.00
program € 23,000.00
intern € 3,500.00
General costs
misc. travel and meeting costs € 5,000.00
chapter meeting € 750.00
fundraising meeting € 750.00
Direct program costs
Technical costs € 10,000.00
Workshops € 2,000.00
Translation Rally € 2,000.00
Lobby € 1,000.00
Small community projects € 1,000.00
Program free cultural heritage € 30,000.00
Program community support € 1,500.00
Wiki Loves Monuments € 5,000.00
Design & print costs € 5,000.00
TOTAL € 229,700.00
Expected income first 12 months
Contributions € 4,000.00
Interest € 2,000.00
Annual Fundraiser € 100,000.00
Out of season € 1,000.00
Free Cultural Heritage € 10,000.00
Sponsorships € 10,000.00
TOTAL INCOME € 127,000.00
WMF Grant part 1 € 95,000.00
TOTAL € 222,000.00



Wikimedia Nederland wants to extensively increase and improve fundraising efforts. In order to act effectively as the main fundraising entity for the Wikimedia movement in the Netherlands, investments in terms of capacity, expertise and technical infrastructure are necessary. Fundraising efforts in the first 2 years will focus on two main target fields: community donations and grant applications (both public and private). Where possible, first steps will be taken in cultivation of major donors and commercial sponsorship.

In the first two years, community donations efforts will focus on the annual online fundraiser and the cultivation of donors after that. For this, there will be close cooperation with the WMF fundraising team.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • Increase coverage of potential donors through banners and email communication
  • Increase community donations (year 1: > 10%, year 2: > another 10%)
  • Establish lasting contacts with grant giving institutions
  • Increase the budget for activities through grants
  • Through the above, make the Wikimedia Nederland office self-sustaining within 2 years
Goals in terms of output
  • Send out thank you's to all new donors
  • Send out email communication to donors at least 4 times a year
  • Install a working CiviCRM database for donations, including 2009/2010 donations (6 months)
  • Develop a plan and time frame for all donations efforts in the year to come (3 months)
  • Improve payment options: enable monthly direct debit, improve iDEAL integration (6 months)
  • Improve localized messaging for the annual fundraiser (year 1)
  • Start testing localized messages for the annual fundraiser (year 1)
  • Have security around fundraiser audited and if needed, improved (year 1)
  • Develop a more strategic fundraising plan for the coming 5 – 10 years (year 2)
  • Increase fundraising expertise by working with external advisors and courses (year 2)
Measurement of success

Wikimedia Nederland intends to be ambitious, both in strategic planning and in actual activities. However, the process of professionalization comes with a number of expected and unexpected challenges. A strong evaluation of the process, problems and possible solutions is essential. Wikimedia Nederland considers this grant proposal and its underlying professionalization plans to be in part a learning process in which an open discussion of bottlenecks should be possible.

Therefore, a thorough self-evaluation will be carried out after one year. This self-evaluation will be repeated after 2 years.

The project will be considered successful if:

  • At least 75% of all output goals (for that one year period) have been reached
  • The organisation has been made self-sustaining, including normal fundraising revenues, at a level of at least 70% of the 2010/2011 budget

Community support[edit]

The driving power behind the Wikimedia projects is the large community of volunteers. Every day, thousands of people collaborate to build an enormous collection of free knowledge which is being managed through Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects. Quality and diversity of the contents of the projects obviously depend critically on a vital and versatile community of editors. Wikimedia Nederland would therefore like to invest even more in that community of volunteers and support it where possible. Most if not all of these activities should be organized by volunteers.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • Support a positive atmosphere in the Dutch Wikimedia community through ongoing community events
  • Help volunteers to exchange and share knowledge and experiences in real life
  • Offer communities a platform to deliberate and discuss topics that are considered important outside the usual environment of a wiki to come to a better mutual understanding
  • Support projects of community members financially through small grants if these projects could not otherwise be realized.
Goals in terms of output
  • Organize a number of non-content related meetings per year where volunteers can get to know each other informally. (year 1: 3)
  • Organize small-scale workshops around specific themes that are relevant to the volunteers of Wikimedia and the other content projects. Each workshop will be participated in by at least 10 Wikimedians. (year 1: 2, year 2: 4)
  • Organize a broader, subject-matter activity to facilitate deliberation and discussion, specifically for Wikipedians. This activity will be participated in by at least 25 active Wikipedians. (year 1)
  • Make again available a number of small subsidies for initiatives from the communities contributing to the mission of Wikimedia.
  • At least 50% of these events is primarily organized by volunteers
Measurement of success

Wikimedia Nederland considers the community as an important asset for the Wikimedia Movement. Activities directed to keep that community healthy and growing are important but also require again support from within the community to be successful. Changes in the program are therefore to be expected based on the input from the volunteers, and the goals should not be taken too literally. There will be a continued communication with these volunteers to keep a flexible schedule and fulfill the actual needs. To ensure that the volunteers are actually supporting this program, at least the majority of the events (but ideally all) should be organized primarily by volunteers.

The project will be successful if:

  • 75% of the activities in the output goals or similar activities have been organized.
  • At least 50% of the organized activities within this program is primarily organized by volunteers.

Free cultural heritage[edit]

Broad outreach activities with a low participation threshold are intended to contribute directly or indirectly to the quality and quantity of the contents of the Wikimedia projects. Besides that, Wikimedia Nederland initiates more specific activities to make existing collections freely available. To that end, there will be collaboration in several ways with cultural heritage institutions (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums, known collectively as GLAM).

In the past, collaborations with the Tropenmuseum and other cultural institutions have been successful, but there are more collaborations coming up, and many more are possible. Wikimedia Nederland wants to grasp these opportunities and collaborate more actively with cultural institutions, to support free cultural heritage.

As a step in reaching this goal, a one day conference will be organized to make professionals and volunteers from the cultural sector better acquainted with the use of free licenses and with related opportunities. Attendees will be informed about the possibilities that free licenses offer in relation to disclosing and reusing collection materials, and in reaching new audiences. They also get a better insight in the ways in which free licenses and cooperation with for example Wikipedia can increase the value of their collection by putting it in a relevant and broadly used context. The conference will be accessible to all interested, but with an emphasis on representatives of cultural institutions such as museums, libraries, archives, churches, etc. Local and national policy makers whose portfolios are relevant to the discussion will also be actively approached.

The project specifically aims at continuation through cooperation initiatives to make material truly freely available under free licenses.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • Discussion on the challenges surrounding the use of free licenses, and existing misconceptions that may exist amongst cultural institutions
  • Handles are offered to cultural institutions on how to put free licenses in to practice effectively
  • Collaborate with cultural institutions to liberate and disseminate knowledge and content freely
Goals in terms of output
  • A conference will be organized on free cultural heritage (1 year):
    • 500 institutions will be approached directly
    • through the sitenotice, an audience of 1,500,000 people will be reached
    • 150 people from the cultural sector will attend the conference
  • At least three specific cooperations with cultural institutions will be facilitated, aiming to release collection material for use on Wikipedia
Measurement of success

Collaborations with cultural institutions have proven to be an effective investment of time and money for Wikimedia. The final goal of this program is to have collaborations with cultural institutions. The conference is a mean to that end. Therefore this program can be considered as successful if:

  • A conference on free cultural heritage has been organized with at least 100 attendees from the cultural sector
  • Three collaborations are initiated (but not necessarily executed)

Public libraries[edit]

Wikimedia Nederland and the public library of Vlissingen have initiated a broad pilot project with the aim of stimulating both the quality and the use of Wikipedia. Within the confines of this collaboration, a range of activities are developed around the themes of media literacy and cultural heritage. The project should lay a foundation for structural and sustainable cooperation between Wikimedia Netherlands and the public library sector (also in other regions in the Netherlands). This pilot should be continued and, if successful, should form the basis for continued cooperation and upscaling to other libraries throughout the country.

The pilot does not only involve actual activities and workshops, but also research and evaluation amongst the different target groups to identify best practices and to improve the model in such a way that it would be an effective basis for further collaborations throughout the country.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • Better integration of Wikipedia into educational programmes
  • Better understanding of Wikimedia, Wikipedia and free licenses by students, their teachers and their parents
  • Cultural heritage material from local institutions is made available for use in Wikimedia projects
Goals in terms of output
  • Media coaches and teachers will be trained to give workshops and (guest) lessons to students about Wikimedia, Wikipedia and free licenses in general. This way, a multiplier effect is being created.
  • Teaching material about Wikimedia and Wikipedia will be developed, and guest lectures are given
  • Information and discussion meetings will be organized for parents and the general audience
  • Collaborations are initiated with local cultural heritage institutions and other partners to disclose knowledge and visual material on Wikipedia
  • Information meetings will organized for local cultural heritage institutions, informing them about Wikipedia and the opportunities that a collaboration with Wikimedia can offer
Measurement of success

The collaboration with the public library of Vlissingen that that has been initiated is a pilot for further collaborations with other libraries throughout the country. Setting up a collaboration this extensive and developing the materials for this pilot is an ambitious project with potentially a high impact. This pilot can be considered successful if:

  • At least three distinctive leaflets are produced with educational material
  • at least 2 information and discussion meetings for local cultural heritage institutions and other partners are organized and 3 partnerships with local cultural heritage insitituions are establised.
  • at least 2 information and discussion meetings are organized for parents and the general audience;

Wiki loves Monuments[edit]

In 2009, Wikimedia Nederland in cooperation with Creative Commons NL and other organizations, successfully organized Wiki loves Art /NL, a photo competition that resulted in over 5000 images from the more than 40 participating museums. In 2010, we would like to organize another large scale photo competition for a broad audience.

On the Dutch language Wikipedia, volunteers have been working on extensive lists of national monuments, using information provided by the national organization for cultural heritage (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, RCE) and are working on completing these with images from each monument. September 2010 will be marked as the month of the monuments and a photo competition will be organized to illustrate these lists of monuments.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • A one-month event with a peak during the National Monument Weekend (September 2010)
  • Positive media attention for Wikimedia through a successful communication strategy for the event
  • More people realizing that they can also help Wikipedia by uploading photos
  • A good coverage of national monuments in Wikipedia including photo material
Goals in terms of output
  • More than 5000 images on Dutch national monuments
  • Passive reach of at least 200.000 people
Measurement of success

Public events like Wiki loves monuments are a great way of involving the general audience into Wikimedia. The actual produced content is only part of the outcomes, but it is usually a good measure for the rest as well, because it relates to the other goals. Therefore, the program can be considered a success if more than 5000 images are collected through this program.


Wikimedia Nederland would like to increase attention for the mission and projects of Wikimedia among the general audience in 2010. The goal is not just to increase awareness of the work of Wikimedia, but also to motivate people and invite them to cooperate in creating a world where everybody has free access to all information.

The association is strengthening its primary communication channels, so that everyone interested in the work of Wikimedia Netherlands can remain informed of the activities and intentions of the chapter. To improve this in an efficient and effective way, professional support will help us to give the chapter a clearer presence in the media and to provide more materials on stock for donors, community members and other people interested. While not a goal in itself, communication is a major factor in the success of other programs.

Goals in terms of outcome
  • An improved presence in the national press
  • A better understanding of Wikipedia and Wikimedia by the general audience
  • Being the natural point of contact for the press when issues like free information, copyright and Wikimedia/Wikipedia are discussed
Goals in terms of output
  • Four times a year, a news letter will be sent out to those interested. In 2010 the news letter will also become available to non-members, and the content will be adapted to that broader target group.
  • The website of the association will be refurbished, and ways will be sought to make the content more up to date and to offer information on recent developments more quickly, for example through a blog.
  • The use of popular social networks such as Twitter and Facebook will be improved.
  • The association will continue to improve its public relations strategy and will send out press releases of all relevant activities.
Measurement of success

Communication is a core requirement for fulfilling our mission, running effective programs and involving volunteers and members into the activities of the association. Therefore this program can only be considered as successful if at least all goals in terms of output are accomplished, or alternative communication methods are used.

Non-financial requirements[edit]

In the process of becoming more professional, constructive coordination and collaboration with the Wikimedia Foundation staff would be useful. Especially when the programs touch the activities of the Foundation, such as fundraising, a close collaboration will be required to be successful. As it develops, Wikimedia Nederland will be better able to take on responsibilities regarding fundraising and other fields in the Netherlands - but to get the most out of this, it will be important that this responsibility and trust - for example through the fundraising - is also actually given.

Fit to strategy[edit]

This grant request would majorly help Wikimedia Nederland to mature towards an organization that can more effectively support the key organizational objectives of Wikimedia. The programs as laid out in the working plan are benificial many aspects that are identified by the Wikimedia Foundation as key organizational objectives. Most clearly, they help the chapter to become more professional and financially sustainable, which helps again to be more effective in outreach and content activities.

By helping Wikimedia Nederland now in this critical development phase, a long term investment is being made into the Wikimedia Movement in the Netherlands. Not only can more funds be approached and effectively used, also more actual program activities directly related to our mission can be executed both in the short as in the long run. Collaborations with interested organizations can be created and fostered and help the Wikimedia projects and mission in the whole world.


Wikimedia Nederland will report regularly during the grant period, through the periodic chapter reports, annual reports (primarily for the members, will also be published and submitted to the Foundation after approval) and financial statements to the General Assembly (a copy will be submitted to the Foundation). After the first and second year, an evaluation of the grant outcomes and spending will be submitted to the Foundation.

Measures of success[edit]

Each program has defined measures of success. At the same time, the grant as a whole can be considered successful if the professionalization (irrespective of the legal status of the staff members) succeeded and the chapter has become self-sustainable. For the second year, more specific goals in terms of output and measures of success will be proposed to the Foundation at a later stage. The measures of success for the grant as a whole are:

  • Wikimedia Nederland has an active office with at least three (part time) staff members, at least 2 FTE (year 1)
  • Wikimedia Nederland has an active office with at least four (part time) staff members, at least 3 FTE (year 2)
  • Wikimedia Nederland has successfully become financially self-sustainable at 50% of the budget as stated above (year 1)
  • Wikimedia Nederland has successfully become financially self-sustainable at 75% of the budget as stated above (year 2)
  • At least one additional program has been funded with (partially) external funding (year 1)
  • At least five of the six programs stated are considered as successful as defined in the specified measures of success (year 1)
  • The annual report and financial statements over 2010 are approved by the General Assemblee and published (year 1)
  • The annual report and financial statements over 2011 are approved by the General Assemblee and published (year 2)

Risk assessment[edit]

Considering the high amount of this grant request, a brief risk assessment is provided, addressing the main risks, and the steps taken to limit risks, in particular risks that are due to factors beyond the immediate control of Wikimedia Nederland.

Most of the grant amount will be spent on hiring staff, outsourcing tasks and setting up an office. All of these will start on (relatively) short term contracts to minimize the risk of being unable to meet long term commitments. In particular contracts for employees present a possible risk: Dutch labor laws offer employees a relatively high degree of protection from dismissal, even in the case of disfunctioning a high severance must be paid; in case of long-term illness of an employee, the employer is financially responsible for continuing to pay the salary for up to two years. The first will be addressed by, at least initially, limiting the term of contract of any new hire to at most one year, and by making full use of the possibilities that the law offers for including a trial period in the contract or by hiring freelancers. The second will be addressed by a proper insurance policy that covers these costs. If freelancers are hired, long term illness is no risk. On the other side in some cases Dutch law considers freelancers as employees for whom social security and salary taxes have to be paid. One of the chapter committee members is a laywer and has sufficient knowledge of Dutch labor law to address these risks, so that maximum flexibility is achieved.

There is always the risk that projects do not succeed due to external factors beyond the control of Wikimedia Nederland. To address this risk, we have decided to spread our efforts among several medium sized projects, each of which is large enough to have a significant impact, but not so large that the failure of one or two projects would jeopardize the success of the entire grant.

Sources of income may vary or even disappear. Wikimedia Nederland will strive to makes its range of sources of income sufficiently broad, so as not to be dependent on a single source of income for its activities and get sufficient expertise to use them to the full extent. This explicitly includes acquiring funds outside the annual Fundraiser, to better cope with possible fluctuations in revenues from the fundraiser, and requesting external funding through subsidies. Wikimedia Nederland will strive to make sure that these efforts do not directly compete with donations for the annual fundraiser.

Wikimedia Nederland will also take steps to ensure continuity of its accounting and internal processes, by making sure that all critical functions can be taken over by other board members or external parties, should the need arise - especially considering the more complicated and critical salary accounting. To this end, the accounting of Wikimedia Nederland will be (partially) outsourced to a professional external party.


  1. The amounts are salary costs based on 0.6 FTE each.