Grants:Programs/Wikimedia Alliances Fund/Scaling Communities-Expansion of Wiki Networks through Partnerships, Infrastructure, and Outreach
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A. Organization type
- Mission-aligned organization
B. Organization name
- Media in Cooperation and Transition
E. Do you have an account on a Wikimedia project?
E1. Please provide the main Wikimedia Username (required) and Usernames of people related to this proposal.
G. Have you received grants from the Wikimedia Foundation before?
- Did not apply previously
H. Have you received grants from any non-wiki organization before?
- H1. Which organization(s) did you receive grants from?
- German Foreign Office, Deutsche Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit, International Organization on Migration, European Union, UN Women
- H2. Please state the size of these grants from the following options.
- Above 50,000 USD
- H3. What type of organization (s) did you receive grants from?
- Government, International NGO, Bilateral or Multilateral Organizations
- H4. What percentage of your program budget do other funders contribute to?
- More than 75%
1. Do you have a fiscal sponsor?
1a. Fiscal organization name.
2. Are you legally registered?
3. What type of organization are you?
- Non profit organisation
4. What is your organization or group's mission and how does it align with the Wikimedia movement?
- At MiCT, we collaborate with our partners supporting audiences to adapt to changing circumstances caused by the climate crisis, conflict, health emergencies and disasters, ever more arbitrary systems or challenging economic circumstances.
Cooperation is vital as we work with partners towards financial viability and creating contextually relevant, valuable content and platforms. MiCT leverages localised collaboration to guarantee access to vital information and an equitable knowledge transfer.
5. If you would like, please share any websites or social media accounts that your group or organization has. (optional)
6. Please state the title of your proposal.
- Scaling Communities-Expansion of Wiki Networks through Partnerships, Infrastructure, and Outreach
9. Where will this proposal be implemented?
10. Indicate if it is a local, international, or regional proposal and if it involves several countries?
10a. If you have answered international, please write the country names and any other information that is useful for understanding your proposal.
- The project will be run in both Ghana and Iraq.
10b. Are there any specific sub-regions or areas where your proposal will be implemented?
11. What is the challenge or problem you are addressing and why is this important?
- The central problem that MiCT seeks to address is the health and sustainability of media systems in authoritarian or transitional contexts. In both countries of operation proposed within this project, the media systems can be characterised by systemic threats of political manipulation of information, knowledge gaps that reflect material or social disadvantage of specific groups, and political barriers to entry in knowledge creation.
As the world continues to see social life and knowledge creation transition online, ensuring that the internet provides not only factual, relevant, and free knowledge, but also mechanisms for participation and agency--two components essential to the democratisation of knowledge creation--is essential.
While the two proposed countries of implementation--Ghana and Iraq--vary drastically along language, geographical, and historical dimensions, they both require the expansion of meaningful processes in political/social life.
MiCT sees itself primary supporting the agency of individuals or organisations in affecting their communities through peaceful means. Media therefore, is a means through which conflict can be ameliorated, resolved, and an opportunity for transition towards a thriving future.
The proposed project with Wikimedia aims to support the agency of individuals and groups to contribute to their media environments, and through it, their social and political lives. In the contexts in which we propose to work, information is often captured by monetary, political, or partisan interests. Through Wikipedia activities, MiCT hopes to support healthier media systems that are accessible and politically sustainable.
12. What is the main objective of your proposal? Please state why you think partnering with Wikimedia Movement helps to achieve this objective?
- By partnering with Wikipedia, we hope to expand and diversify user groups in order to fill knowledge gaps, grow content libraries for communities living under authoritarian or transitional contexts, and develop organisational capacity of Wiki user groups to recruit and train new editors as well as manage outreach activities for future expansion.
13. Describe your main strategies to achieve this objective?
- The central challenge that the project addresses is the need for communities to grow. This requires organisational partnerships, technical infrastructure, and new editors.
For the Wiki community to thrive, partnerships with mission aligned organisations is essential to expanding not only the Wiki community, but also diversifying the content generated by editors. Connecting user groups with partners that share a passion for open source knowledge or independent media is therefore central to any growth strategy. Additionally, focus on supporting partnerships that diversify user groups is essential to ensuring that the site is beneficial to all peoples, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, age, language, or any other social dimension. Through such partnerships, Wikipedia can more accurately compile global knowledge free of systemic bias and create a source of knowledge relevant to all peoples.
Closely related, is the problem of recruiting new editors that will support Wikipedia and improve the supply of content. To be able to recruit new editors, Wiki groups need to be skilled on leveraging social media platforms and information technology to reach out to potential supporters and provide them with the training and materials needed to become editors. This project seeks to leverage MiCT's skills in public campaigning, its technical infrastructure for online training, and its partnerships to support the growth of Wiki groups and their organisational capacities. Part of this strategy is not only to launch a high quality campaign, but target key Wiki user group members to train in the implementation of online outreach. Depending on the time availability of key staff user group members, MiCT will craft a end-to-end public campaign based on participatory content creation, strategy design, and implementation. Methodologies include one-on-one and group training, user group leadership events to practice campaign planning, and the production of guides on ho to use key ad management software as well as lessons learned from the campaign (most responsive target groups for example).
By tackling partnerships, editors, and infrastructure, MiCT seeks to collaborate with user groups with the goal of supporting content expansion and a thriving movement.
14. Are you running any in-person events or activities?
15. Please state if your proposal aims to work to bridge any of the identified content knowledge gaps?
- Content Gender gap, Language, Sexual Orientation, Important Topics (topics considered to be of impact or important in the specific context)
16. Please state if your proposal includes any of these areas or thematic focus.
- Culture, heritage or GLAM , Human Rights, Diversity
17. Will your work focus on involving participants from any underrepresented communities? Select all categories that apply.
- Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, Ethnic/racial/religious or cultural background, Linguistic / Language
18. Please tell us more about your target participants.
- For the activities in Ghana, the central goal is to connect the local user group with LBGTQ+ activist networks. The backdrop of increasing legal and social oppression of Queer Ghanaians is bolstered by government propaganda and a dearth of factual information on the social reality of this group. Through partnering with the LGBTQ+ Ghana organization, we aim to integrate an already active network of cyber activists into the Wiki Movement. Requirements to participate would only be that one is a trusted member of the LGBTQ+ group or the Ghana Wiki group, or from a related network and trusted by the project organizers. This ensures that training and project activities conducted by those having incentive to support the content gap addressed through this project and have the safety and security of those involved in mind.
As for project activities in Iraq, a central goal of the project is setting up a free and reliable training infrastructure for recruiting and integrating new editors to join Wiki through the training program. While MiCT's campaign staff will work with an Iraqi user group to identify target groups for the campaign, MiCT will also aim to target groups under-represented in existing wiki structures--these under-represneted groups will be identified throughout the survey stage in work package one, which will aim to build a current picture of the Iraqi editor landscape. Online training curriculum will be designed in order to retain visitors using modern standards of design thinking within the curriculum format. The training will be hosted for free by MiCT's learning management platform which will provide continued opportunities for participants to get started, support existing local projects, and improve skills. The trainings will be hosted by MiCT indefinitely for the benfit of the Wiki global community. Additionally, universities will be engaged to provide access to interested students/staff, spaces for workshops/events, among other strategic collaborations. This would constitute a sustainable engagement with students that could extend across cohorts.
Supporting long-term engagement through the combination of online outreach, high quality training, and opportunities for in-person events will underpin an editor retention strategy.
19. Do you have plans to work with other Wikimedia communities, groups or affiliates in your country, or in other countries, to implement this proposal?
19a. If yes, please tell us about these connections online and offline and how you have let Wikimedia communities know about this proposal.
- In Ghana, the idea for the project was mainly developed between representatives of LGBTQ+ Ghana and MiCT, which were in contact over the summer of 2021 into the beginning of the proposal submission period. Once the idea for implementing Wiki activities and creating a partnership with the Ghanaian user group was agreed upon, WMF connected MiCT and LGBTQ+ Ghana with a local wiki group in order to detemine local support for supporting a Queer organization. The group representative immediately expressed that this project was of interest to him and was something he hoped to do independently.
In Iraq, discussions began between MiCT and a Iraqi user group representative in early November and he directly expressed his desire for all three activities included in this proposal: curriculum and training support, partnership development with universities, and outreach/campaign support.
19b. If no, please tell us the reasons why it has not been possible to make these connections.
20. Will you be working with other external non-Wikimedian partners to implement this proposal?
20a. If yes, please describe these partnerships.
- Central to the Ghana proposal is the collaboration with LGBTQ+. They are the key partner supporting the overarching project goal of filling a content gap with political and social relevance. The organization manages a network of volunteers primarily engaging in Cyber Activism, making them uniquely prepared to support content creation on Wikipedia. They will provide the network of participants while the wiki group will provide training and support.
For the Iraq project, universities will be key external partners in providing spaces for in person activities and a cite of outreach to students. MiCT has two formal partnerships with Anbar and Tikrit Universities, and leads on partnerships among up to 3 other universities. Universities selected by the user groups will be prioritized in the partnership development process.
20a. If yes, indicate sharing of resources from these partners (in kind support, grants, donations, payments).
- Resource sharing will depend on the level of support offered by the partner. For the external partner in Ghana, they will supply project/event management services which will be paid. They will additionally receive equipment for their network to partake in Wiki editing.
University partnerships will take form throughout the beginning stages of project design. MiCT has supported partners with equipment, curriculum, or payments for services depending on the details of the partnership.
21. Please tell us how your organization is structured.
- MiCT is directed by Co-Founders Klaas Glenewinkel and Dr. Anja Wollenberg. Overseeing project implementation will be Africa Programmes Manager Dirk Spilker, who has over 10 years experience at MiCT and around 20 years experience in managing development projects in Africa. Senior Project Manager Christa Waegemann will be leading all activities in Iraq, along with key team members Dima Salem and Marina Abdou. MiCT's finance and administration department is headed by Maren Hornung and she will manage two other finance officers to lead financial controlling activities.
22. Do you have the team that is needed to implement this proposal?
- In Iraq, Weagemann will direct a core team on the ground. Her role is primarily to implement activities set out in the proposal and coordinate with MiCT team member in Baghdad, Dima Salem. She is a seasoned coordinator and project officer supporting all activities within the borders of Iraq proper. They coordinate as a central team to implement all activities outside of the KRG. Marina Abdou additionally a core member of the Iraq team. She handles a mixture of financial controlling along with a finance department representative as well as key project management activity support.
Other positions in the budget are either a mixture of paid organizers or external consultants. The campaign staff will be chosen among a network of professionals collaborating with MiCT across a litany of projects funded by the GiZ and IOM. They are experienced in leading training activities alongside their campaign duties, specializing in up-skilling journalists, media professional, and content creators on public marketing.
The strategic plan uploaded below will give greater clarity to the running of activities and responsible staff, organizers, or consultants, Where activities have not yet been agreed upon between MiCT and the user group in question, general activity descriptions were provided with mechanisms set in place to require MiCT to agree on metrics for assessment once activites are solidified.
23. Please state if your organization or group has a Strategic Plan that can help us further understand your proposal. You can also upload it here.
- Upload Strategic Plan
Learning, Sharing, and Evaluation
24. What do you hope to learn from this proposal?
- In order to successfully run this program, MiCT seeks to get to know the Arabic speaking user group on a detailed level. Understanding their communication structures, their key leaders, organizational visions, and project goals are some of the basic lessons that MiCT will need to learn in order to properly support their growth and capability.
Furthermore, MiCT hopes to collect knowledge on Iraqi audiences in order to efficiently recruit new editors for the organizations. This knowledge will be of course be Iraqi specific, however any knowledge collected on target groups for expansion of editing networks can be useful and tested across other contexts, meaning MiCT can support Wiki User Group expansion on at least a regional level in the medium term. Knowledge on essential training skills needed for new editors will also be a central lesson. Creating introductory courses for new editors will be relevant across multiple different contexts, and crafting course material with high participant retention is a key lesson we hope to take away. This would additionally allow MiCT to support Wiki across multiple different contexts and provide basic to approach other wiki groups with similar organizational goals.
25. Enter a description of the metric and a number in the target field. If the metric does not apply to you, enter N/A for not applicable.
|Number of participants||University Event Participants (either new or existing): 50
New Participants (beginning online courses): 100 User Group Members (Campaign Participation): 3
|Number of editors||This overlaps highly with the previous metrics. We also request that his be flexible to the format of partnership developed with the Universities. For instance the user group may want to focus on outreach to new editors or host events at universities with existing editors.
New Editors (from training): 50 Partnership Events (TBD)
|Number of organizers||Two organizers will be paid in Ghana--one Wiki member and one external organization manager. The Wiki Member will be paid to create online training programs with an curriculum expert for project use and beyond. This will be a key group infrastructure and can be used for the movement indefinitely. Due to security concerns, MiCT believed it best to pay the external partner lead to organize the events. Given the sensitivity of the subject matter, keeping local management within the organization was a stop gap against undue risk.
A member of the Iraq user group will similarly be paid to develop training in collaboration with MiCT and an external curriculum developer.
|Wikipedia||Ghana: 30 (created)
Iraq 120 (created or improved)
We have still not been able to set targets with the groups, and would therefore like flexibility on the targets until the groups have had input.
|Wikimedia Commons||Participation in this project will depend on the training requests from the user groups. For instance if the Iraqi user group would like to create a module on commons uploads and support commons through one of the three budgeted events, we would set a target with them directly. We would therefore like to refrain from setting a target until we know that commons work will be included.||N/A|
25a. If for some reason your proposal will not measure these core metrics please provide an explanation. (optional)
26. What other information will you be collecting to learn about the impact of your work? (optional)
- We will be measuring the reach and success of the outreach campaign, most likely measured in traffic driven to either the Wiki group Facebook page, however more importantly the traffic directed to the online training modules. This would be counted outside of content additions to Wikipedia. We will also observe training completion rate.
For the participatory campaign, a mixture of reviews submitted by the Wiki group and the completion of training guides/campaign lessons will be a primary source of impact evaluation.
27. What tools would you use to measure each metric selected?
- The online training program has sufficient M&E capabilities to support qualitative and quantitative assessment of the trainings and the traffic to the modules generated by the campaign.
Additionally we welcome support from WMF on how best to capture impact and how best to set targets where we remain unsure.
28. How do you hope to share these results so that others can learn from them?
- Make a short presentation of the experience, Share results on social media, Develop learning material for other users, I would like to receive support from the Foundation to discover how I can share my learning
29. What is the amount you are requesting from WMF? Please provide this amount in your local currency.
- 87825 EUR
30. What is this amount in US Currency (to the best of your knowledge)?
- 99299.9 USD
31. & 32. Please provide a budget for the amount of funding requested.
33. What do you do to make sure there is a good management of funds?
- MiCT has years of experience working across transitional countries or lands with unstable security or banking systems. We pride ourselves on having an experienced project management and financial team that coordinated with staff in country to comply with German financial obligations as well as donor compliance rules.
34. How will you contribute towards creating a supportive environment for participants using the UCOC and Friendly Space Policy?
- MiCT will not only target incorporating under-represented groups into the Wiki movement will follow internal policies on diversity inclusion, mediation, and other measures to support safe environments within the project. This also includes following security guidance of staff in country, consultants, and experienced management staff.
35. Please use this optional space to upload any documents that you feel are important for further understanding your proposal.
- Other public document(s):
By submitting your proposal/funding request you agree that you are in agreement with the Application Privacy Statement, WMF Friendly Space Policy and the Universal Code of Conduct.
36. We/I have read the Application Privacy Statement, WMF Friendly Space Policy and Universal Code of Conduct.
- Please add any feedback to the grant discussion page only. Any feedback added here will be removed.
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