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Grants:Programs/Wikimedia Research Fund/Unlocking world’s cultural heritage. Understanding the impact of GLAM-Wiki projects on opening up GLAMs

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statusnot funded
Unlocking world’s cultural heritage. Understanding the impact of GLAM-Wiki projects on opening up GLAMs
start and end datesJuly 2023 - July 2024
budget (USD)41 046  USD
fiscal year2022-23
applicant(s)• Aleksandra Janus, Maria Drabczyk and Aleksandra Cztewertyńska



Aleksandra Janus, Maria Drabczyk and Aleksandra Cztewertyńska

Affiliation or grant type

Centrum Cyfrowe


Aleksandra Janus, Maria Drabczyk and Aleksandra Cztewertyńska

Wikimedia username(s)

Aleksandra Janus, User: Aleksandra Janus

Project title

Unlocking world’s cultural heritage. Understanding the impact of GLAM-Wiki projects on opening up GLAMs

Research proposal[edit]


Description of the proposed project, including aims and approach. Be sure to clearly state the problem, why it is important, why previous approaches (if any) have been insufficient, and your methods to address it.

The GLAM sector is in a phase of major change and transformation. For over two decades, it has been undergoing a digital transition. In addition to that, the pandemic of 2020-2021 forced it to imagine new ways of accessing and interacting with the GLAM’s collections. GLAMs have been observing how differently people interact with online collections turning from audience into active creators. It influences how institutions define their role and mission: shifting from knowledge gatekeepers to community enablers. In order to remain relevant in the changing socioeconomic landscape, GLAMs must embed their operations within the communities and networks they aim to serve and contribute to free, open knowledge resources.

The proposed research is aimed at understanding the impact of GLAM-Wiki projects on the wider process of opening up cultural heritage collections digitized by GLAM institutions all over the world. In particular the objective of the project is to study the impact of GLAM Wiki initiatives on:

- GLAM’s attitudes towards opening up collections, including the attitudes of GLAM’s employees towards openness and institutional policies concerning access to their digitised resources,

- audiences of GLAMs & their experience of accessing heritage & art online, also using external platforms like Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons, etc.,

- participatory practices in GLAM (community engagement, networking, lifelong learning) build around GLAM Wiki initiatives that can contribute to more inclusive and community-driven models of operation.

Proposed research methodology includes:

- Desk research on current state of openness of GLAM collections,

- In-depth interviews with representatives of 10 GLAMs from various countries involved in GLAM Wiki projects, pre-selected together with the Wikimedia Team, representing various scale and geographic scope,

- Online questionnaire circulated among GLAMs audiences focused on their experience of open collections (N=150)

- Analysis of GLAM’s and Wikimedia statistics from 10 institutions in which employees are interviewed.

The project’s results can serve as a basis for building more effective strategies of opening up GLAM’s collections. They might be translated into concrete ideas for new GLAM-Wiki initiatives as well as serve the world-wide free culture community aiming at more open and equal access to heritage resources.

The project is planned for 12 months.


  • Aleksandra Janus
  • ajanus(_AT_)centrumcyfrowe.pl
  • Principal investigator
  • Director of Centrum Cyfrowe
  • Warsaw, Poland
  • Maria Drabczyk
  • mdrabczyk(_AT_)centrumcyfrow.pl
  • Co-investigator, policy advisor
  • Board Member of Centrum Cyfrowe
  • Warsaw, Poland
  • Aleksandra Czetwertyńska
  • aczetwertynska(_AT_)centrumcyfrowe.pl
  • Co-investigator
  • Board Member of Centrum Cyfrowe
  • Warsaw, Poland
  • Natalia Cetera
  • ncetera(_AT_)centrumcyfrowe.pl
  • Project coordinator
  • Open culture specialist at Centrum Cyfrowe
  • Warsaw, Poland
  • Zuzanna Ciesielska
  • zciesielska(_AT_)centrumcyfrowe.pl
  • Data coordinator
  • Open culture specialist at Centrum Cyfrowe
  • Warsaw, Poland


Approximate amount requested in USD.

41 046  USD

Budget Description

Briefly describe what you expect to spend money on (specific budgets and details are not necessary at this time).

The project budget includes costs of:

- conducting research (desk research, interview questionnaire preparation, conducting 10 interviews, online questionnaire preparation & dissemination, results analysis) - 10 682 $

- preparing the final report (3 expert commentaries, preparation of the final report) - 5455 $

- communication (communication and dissemination strategy, report graphics & layout, policy event promoting the report - 3091 $

- coordination & administration - 21818 $


Address the impact and relevance to the Wikimedia projects, including the degree to which the research will address the 2030 Wikimedia Strategic Direction and/or support the work of Wikimedia user groups, affiliates, and developer communities. If your work relates to knowledge gaps, please directly relate it to the knowledge gaps taxonomy.

Such research would support Wikimedia strategic goals by:

  • providing insights into the impact of GLAM Wiki projects on broadening wide access to world’s heritage & knowledge and thus serving as a basis for creating recommendations for further development of GLAM Wiki projects,
  • providing insights into how these projects impact various audiences and their active participation and thus serving as a basis for creating recommendations for ensuring more equal access to heritage & knowledge for diverse audiences.


Plans for dissemination.

The research outcomes will be openly shared online and disseminated among the Wiki & free culture community through networks, working groups, communities of interest to increase their impact in the GLAM sector & advocate for a more open GLAM through dissemination among policy makers, presentations at the GLAM Wiki events.

An online policy event will be organised for policy makers, GLAM representatives and the Wiki community, including a keynote and a roundtable discussion.

Past Contributions[edit]

Prior contributions to related academic and/or research projects and/or the Wikimedia and free culture communities. If you do not have prior experience, please explain your planned contributions.

FCC has been involved in free culture communities since its establishment as a local chapter of Creative Commons, member of: Communia Association, Coalition for Open Education, Access to Knowledge (A2K) Coalition and the Right to Research in International Copyright projects. In the past collaborated with Wikimedia on a.o. National Transpositions of the EU Copyright Reform (2019-2021). In 2019 we conducted a study commissioned by Wikimedia DE on Open Policies & Business Models of Museums (results presented at Wikimania 2019) & a desk research prepared for the Partnerships Working Group, Wikimedia Strategy Process. Representatives of Wikimedia attended our events, including EduCoop conference (2021-2022) & the OER Policy Forum (2021 - 2022).

I agree to license the information I entered in this form excluding the pronouns, countries of residence, and email addresses under the terms of Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0. I understand that the decision to fund this Research Fund application, the application itself along with all the information entered by my in this form excluding the pronouns, country of residences, and email addresses of the personnel will be published on Wikimedia Foundation Funds pages on Meta-Wiki and will be made available to the public in perpetuity. To make the results of your research actionable and reusable by the Wikimedia volunteer communities, affiliates and Foundation, I agree that any output of my research will comply with the WMF Open Access Policy. I also confirm that I have read the privacy statement and agree to abide by the WMF Friendly Space Policy and Universal Code of Conduct.