Grants:Project/Addressing the Global South systemic bias

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statusnot selected
Addressing the Global South systemic bias
summaryTo import data from a widely underrepresented country such as Peru to Wikidata. On a first stage, a research will establish which databases could be potentially imported. On a second stage, data import will start in case the database has a free license; otherwise, government agencies or other institutions who own such data will be reached out to establish a partnership.
type of grantoffline programs and events
amount18400 USD
type of applicantindividual
this project needs...
created on21:58, 29 November 2018 (UTC)

Project idea[edit]

What is the problem you're trying to solve?[edit]

To start addresssing the issue of scarcity or absence of data on Wikidata from developing countries by dealing with the case of Peru.

Educated people with free time from richer countries are more likely to contribute to Wikidata. Such users tend to contribute on subjects familiar to them, and also richer countries produce more data. On the other hand, people from developing countries are less likely to contribute to Wikidata because of limited Internet access or usage. As a result, there are far less items on Wikidata related to developing countries. This situation creates a big problem: a systemic bias where there is scarce or no data from a large part of the world (the Global South), whereas a huge amount of information is available for the other part of the world. However, global issues, such as health or global warming, need access to data from developing countries. It is, therefore, important to begin tackling this Global South systemic bias.

What is your solution?[edit]

I have chosen Peru to start addressing this problem mostly because it is one of the more underrepresented countries on Wikidata. For instance, only one Peru-related property (Ubigeo Code) has been created on Wikidata.

As for the specific tasks:

  • Map all databases available for potential use, because Peru has only started to gather data that was previously non-existent (data available on the national open data portal is quite limited at the moment).
  • Reach out to government agencies and other institutions to establish partnerships in order to bring all available data to Wikidata. Developing countries, such as Peru, are not eager to invest on systematising data, so even if data exist, it is not accessible but to a few people.

Project goals[edit]

Make data accessible on Wikidata from an underrepresented country (Peru) in order to start addresssing the Global South systemic bias.

Test the possibility of partnerships with government agencies and other institutions in Peru in order to replicate the model of data sharing with other developing countries.

Project impact[edit]

How will you know if you have met your goals?[edit]

I plan to import at least 3 databases from Peru, and to establish at least one partnership with a government agency or another institution to keep importing data.

Do you have any goals around participation or content?[edit]

The number of items on Wikidata would depend on the size of the databases, but the minimum would be 300 new Wikidata items.

Project plan[edit]


Project timeframe: July 2018 to March 2019

1. Organising at least two Wikidata workshops together with the Wikimedians of Peru user group (to be taken place at different points during the project).

2. Maping all databases about Peru available for potential use, and inquiring about their licences - Months 1-2

3. Importing all data available on a free licence, and reaching out to government agencies and other institutions in order to free the data or to explore other options for accessing data not available online - Months 3-9


Item Budget
Project manager (for 9 months) 15,000.00 USD
Travel (inland) 800.00 USD
Administrative costs 2,600.00 USD
Total 18,400.00 USD

Community engagement[edit]

  • Introducing the Peruvian community into the use of Wikidata.
  • Seeking feedback from the Wikidata community during the process of importing data.
  • Presentation at WikidataCon 2019 and Wikimania 2019 of the project's accomplishments in order to encourage other users to find alternatives to access data from other underrepresented countries.

Get involved[edit]


Please use this section to tell us more about who is working on this project. For each member of the team, please describe any project-related skills, experience, or other background you have that might help contribute to making this idea a success.

  • Andreasmperu (Project manager): Wikidata administrator for the past 5 years, data enthusiast.

Community notification[edit]

The Wikidata community will be notified through the Project Chat, Facebook and Telegram group.


Do you think this project should be selected for a Project Grant? Please add your name and rationale for endorsing this project below! (Other constructive feedback is welcome on the discussion page).

  1. Support Support It is an interesting use case for globally under-represented countries, that hopefully can be replicated elsewhere. Even more, if there is no or little effort by the States to open up their archives or datasets. Sannita - not just another sysop 09:46, 7 December 2018 (UTC)
  2. Support Support Interested to learn from this mapping, and see what happens in the pilot overall. Siko (talk) 17:49, 10 December 2018 (UTC)