Grants:PEG/WM Wikisym/2012 Wikisym Conference

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This submission to the Wikimedia Foundation Grants Program was funded in the fiscal year 2012-13. This is a grant to a group.

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.
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This Wikimedia Foundation grant has a fiscal sponsor. The John Ernest Foundation administered the grant on behalf of The Wikisym Initiative.

Legal name of organization or individual requesting this grant
Cliff Lampe
For organizations: Are you a for-profit entity? No
For organizations: If non-profit (US) or equivalent (outside the US) status is available in your country, do you have or are you pursuing such status (please be specific): Yes
For individual applicants: Please note that if your request is accepted you will be required to provide documentation verifying your full legal name and address.
Grant recipient organization
The John Ernest Foundation (
Grant contact name
Dirk Riehle.
Grant contact username or email
Grant contact title (position)
Project lead name
Cliff Lampe
Project lead username or email
Project lead title (position), if any
General Chair
Full project name
The Wikisym Initiative
Amount requested in USD or local currency (USD will be assumed if no other currency is specified)
Provisional target start date
June 15, 2012
Provisional completion date
August 27-29, 2012 (Conference Days)

Budget breakdown[edit]

  • Contribution to coffee breaks/Lunch: $8,000 (out of approximately $15,000 total)
    • Provided by Ars Electronica. Will display WMF logo sponsoring the corresponding break/lunch on conference program.
  • Contribution to conference materials: $2,000 (out of approximate $4000 total)
    • Totebag, pen-drives...
    • Include WMF logo (monochrome) and promotional material (as per request, provided by WMF).
  • Contribution to grants for on-site volunteers: $2,000 (Out of approximately $22,000 total)
    • Individual grants for students and community volunteers helping with on-site organization.

Project goal[edit]

The goal of WikiSym is to become a reference forum for researchers, practitioners, industry and entrepeneurs in open collaboration to share their ongoing works, interests and opportunities for cooperation. This symposium has become as central location for research on Wikipedia processes and other forms of open collaboration, and work presented here has been cited in a wide range of other research venues. Participants of this conference have also propagated Wikipedia and wiki research in a number of other academic and professional conferences.

Topics of interest for the conference include all aspects of the people, tools, contexts, and content that comprise open collaboration systems. For example:

   * Collaboration tools and processes.
   * Social and cultural aspects of collaboration.
   * Collaboration beyond text: images, video, sound, etc.
   * Communities and workgroups.
   * Knowledge and information production.
   * New media literacies.
   * Uses and impact of wikis and open resources in specific fields.

Besides the main conference track, the proposal is focused on 2 specific initiatives that could be of great interest for both WMF and WikiSym audience:

  • Wikimedia Research session: Since 2009 WikiSym hosts a Wikipedia research session as part of the main conference track, which has led to interesting outcomes such as the Wikipedia Research policy and the SRAG. We believe that it is essential to continue with this special session, supporting the great work of researchers around Wikimedia projects worldwide, as well as to welcome new participants.

Project scope and list of activities[edit]

The International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration (WikiSym) is the premier conference on open collaboration and related technologies. In 2012, WikiSym celebrates its 8th year of scholarly, technical and community innovation in Linz Austria, in coordination with the annual Ars Electronica festival.

The conference program will include a peer-reviewed research track, as well as workshops, a doctoral consortium, invited keynotes and panel speakers. Open Space, a participant-organized track will also run throughout the conference. Many of the most innovative technology companies in the world have a presence in Mountain View, which makes it an ideal venue for hatching new ideas and thoughtful debate about collaborative computing among technologists, researchers, educators, and activists. We expect to reach the full capacity of the conference venue (~250 attendees).

Non-financial requirements[edit]


Fit to strategy[edit]

WMF sponsorship will be aimed at improving their visibility and commitment in ongoing initiatives and projects among like-minded organizations. Likewise, WMF will increase its outreach scope to private companies, entrepreneurs and research centers working in open collaboration, open knowledge and open web technologies.

Concrete events such as the Wikimedia Research Session are specifically conceived to increase awareness and participation among researchers from a broad range of disciplines in WMF projects.

Other benefits[edit]

Participation of other well-known sponsors (such as Creative Commons) will help WikiSym to have better impact among the target audience. Sponsorships from big private organizations, such as Google (conference sponsor in 2012) is also a good opportunity to deliver key messages about WMF strategy, mission, and opportunities for collaboration to an audience who cannot be easily addressed otherwise. In addition, collocation with Ars Electronica will ensure the presence of many potential news audience members (AE is promoting the event to their members, and there will be at least one joint event). This event will also draw heavy media attention, and media outlets will also be invited to attend the Wikisym sessions.

Measures of success[edit]

We can define several concrete measurements for success and impact:

  • Number of attendees to the main conference.
  • Number of attendees to the Wikipedia Research Session.
  • Number of different research works on WMF projects presented.
  • Number of doctoral dissertations related to WMF projects and goals
  • Mass and social media coverage of the event
  • Number of new proposals and intiatives launched in WikiSym 2012.

Team members (optional)[edit]

This event draws heavy participation from many top tier academics at universities across the globe. In addition, there will be members of the WMF doctoral research fellows program in attendance, presenting their work.

For grantees

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