Grants:Project/Rapid/magnolia312/Connecting Scientific Conferences to Wiki: Teaching Social Scientists How to Share Their Work Better

From Meta, a Wikimedia project coordination wiki
Helping Give Away Psychological Science/Connecting Scientific Conferences to Wiki: Teaching Social Scientists How to Share Their Work Better
We propose to work within Helping Give Away Psychological Science (HGAPS) to disseminate the impact of scientific conferences onto wiki platforms to reach a broader audience.
start dateJanuary 1st
end dateMarch 31st
budget (local currency)USD 5000
budget (USD)USD 5000
grant typegroup
non-profit statusYes, incorporated as charitable corporation in North Carolina, USA, and US IRS Determination letter of 501c3 status available from 2018 onward.
organization (if applicable)• Helping Give Away Psychological Science
website (if applicable)HGAPS HGAPS Wikiversity page

Please see the sample Editathon/Training application before drafting your application.

Project Goal[edit]

Objective: Create a demonstration project showing ways of connecting scientific meetings (and the various activities and content they generate) with Wikimedia and other open source platforms to increase accessibility, reduce barriers to engagement, and make resources easier to find and update even after the conclusion of the event.

Background: Currently, not everyone in the academic community has equal access, opportunities, and means to obtaining scientific knowledge from scholars. The general public is in an even more significant deficit of scientific knowledge due to facing more barriers to content curated by scientists. Professionals, scientists, and knowledge-rich people write excellent articles that give invaluable information and speak at conferences with many attendants, impacting each of their lives. However, there is a crucial problem: most are not free and advertised to select circles. Quite the opposite: Most conferences are expensive, requiring travel, a hotel, meals, and a registration fee. Some conferences are invite-only or members-only. As a result, those exceptional talks are only seen by a fraction of the people who desire to engage with interesting and new ideas/topics. All too often, most of the attendees are limited to people at institutions with the most resources to support them and their work. This is not usually due to a formal policy or a conscious bias; it is an economic fact.

Helping Give Away Psychological Science ( is both an IRS-recognized 501c3 charitable nonprofit organization and a Wikimedia User Group dedicated to creating open-source and free information so that the ideas can reach a greater global audience. This mission levels the playing field for people to make new contributions and democratizes science which makes it easier for others to share, apply and add to ideas and research. Our goal has led us to explore Wikiversity to connect talks and materials (such as slides, handouts, reference lists) with a free, organized, and publicly accessible structure. We have learned that Wikiversity is a more suitable platform for these tasks than Wikipedia. Meetings at professional or scientific conventions are not geared toward the general public (the audience for Wikipedia). On the other hand, Wikiversity was built as a teaching tool, so more technical information is appropriate in contrast to strictly encyclopedic material. Scientific conference presentations are also considered “gray literature” by Wikipedia because they usually have not followed as strict of a peer-review process as is typical in reputable academic journals. Conferences also provide a different learning experience. They are places where people learn about new and improved methods, techniques, and procedures, causing debates and nuanced discussions to break out more rapidly than usual. Both the “how” and the “discuss” aspects connect beautifully with Wikiversity.

The primary purpose of this project is to create a feature-rich demonstration project of new ways to share some of the best free information so that it reaches and benefits a much wider audience. This way, it is easier to understand for viewers or readers by assuring accuracy and availability. For conferences specifically, we will create articles that reiterate the same information as presented. This contrasts with what protocols typically follow a conference, where once the information is presented, the attendees will have complex, limited, or no access to the content again. By spreading the information on topics after a conference, individuals will be more present while at the conference without writing down notes hastily. This way, we are creating amplified accessibility for everyone attending and increasing the engagement/learning for a more extended period of time. In addition, a broader audience can benefit than would in the traditional conference model. In the past, the discussion ends when the forum ends; any trickle that continues tends to be an exclusive and isolated email exchange.

In contrast, Wikiversity conference pages also create a space for discourse to continue while documenting and sharing with all viewing the discuss tab. So far, our work with Wikimedia has dramatically boosted engagement and continued updating and viewership, and we will continue to use it more through this project to help more people. Examples include our Wikiversity conference pages for the Miami International Child and Adolescent Mental Health (MICAMH) Conference (Wikiversity pages here), a set of videos about evidence-based psychotherapeutic treatments created as student projects at the University of Wyoming with support from the Society for Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, and several other early experiments that are part of the page pile under, which have accrued 46,900+ visits since creation. Even relatively small events, such as the annual meeting of the Special Interest Group (SIG) for Bipolar Disorders at the Annual Meeting of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, can become accessible to a much larger audience by connecting and sharing information and resources on Wikiversity - fewer than 40 members and fewer than 12 pages accruing 17,000+ views since incept. Our current model utilizes open-access platforms such as Google to transform conferences, but Wikiversity would allow for a discussion page that can continuously be updated.

Choose one or more of the following goals. You can add or delete goals as needed.

  1. Distribute more beneficial information to the public
  2. Increase technical skills for existing editors
  3. Add or improve content
  4. Change how academics and professionals think of Wiki and dissemination

Project Plan[edit]


Tell us how you'll carry out your project. Be sure to answer the following questions:

1. Are you doing one editathon or training or a series of editathons or trainings?

We will have a rapid set of at least 2 to 3 edit-a-thons with a small group of editors who will build an example using a back catalog of a year’s worth of presentations and talks as well as a subset of posters. There will be a kick-off, wrap-up, and summarize edit-a-thon, plus an "as needed" session. In between sessions, contributors will work asynchronously. Using existing materials with a CC BY SA 3.0 or more permissive license will make it feasible to have a “demonstration project” completed rapidly and share it with future conference organizers. Because we are starting with adequate knowledge, we will have an intensive editing process instead of starting with training, as is usually the case when running an edit-a-thon that attracts lots of novice or inexperienced editors. We have started to plan this project by organizing an effective and more accessible network for the common public to understand. The expected outcome of this project is the improvement of existing information and the creation of information spawned from academic meetings onto Wikiversity conference pages throughout the wiki ecosystem. With these improvements, scholars and even the general public will understand the purpose of these conferences and our goal to improve the public information on Psychological topics. Through our series of edit-a-thons, we will promote shared goals of the wiki community and Helping Give Away Psychological Science by allowing the public free and easy access to information from the social sciences, in formats that are more accessible and engaging than full-length journal articles.
Note about COVID Risk Management: HGAPS has been using an all virtual format for its meetings for more than a year (April 2020 to November 2021), with meetings hosted on Zoom, Google Hangouts, or Jitsi. At the end of October 2021, some chapters and groups have started experimenting with a hybrid meeting format, following local guidelines for each subset of people meeting in the same physical location, while continuing to use videoconferencing and screensharing for remote participants. For example, the UNC HGAPS Chapter has returned to offering a physical meeting location following the North Carolina and University of North Carolina guidelines for in-person meetings (social distancing, masks when meeting inside) while Zooming with collaborators in Mexico, Canada, and throughout the USA.
For the execution of this particular project, we expect it to be a subset of contributors, and do not expect to cross the threshold of 10 people in a room used in the Wikimedia Foundation risk assessment.

2. How have you let relevant Wikimedia communities know about this proposal? You are required to provide links to on-wiki pages to inform these communities about your proposed work. Examples of places where this can be done include community discussion pages, affiliate discussion pages, or relevant project talk pages.
You may also provide information about external social media channels you may be using.

We are specifically doing this grant to improve the skills of individuals that have already been working on Wiki platforms through HGAPS. We will use common communications through HGAPS to connect our skilled editors to professionals. We are specifically choosing to improve current editors skills so we can include scientific information from professionals and conferences.

3. How will you let participants know about the edit-a-thon? In what ways will you be communicating with them?
For example, these can include on-wiki spaces, social media channels, mailing lists, messaging apps, or physical/online gatherings.

Inside Wiki, we will announce the edit-a-thons on our User Group page, and through affiliations with the North Carolina Wikipedia User Group. We hope to attract interest from other experienced Wikimedians so that we can expand our network and build connections between communities.
Outside of Wiki, Helping Give Away Psychological Science has an expansive community that branches to all parts of the world. Its Board of Directors currently includes people based in Australia, Canada, England, and Singapore as well as the United States, and it has several hundred volunteers, including a set of 30-40 who are attending weekly virtual or hybrid working meetings on Thursdays (with participation mostly from the Western Hemisphere because of time zone considerations, as the meeting time is 6-8 pm Eastern (UTC-5)). Using HGAPS and our Wikiversity presence establishes an infrastructure for this project. HGAPS projects also work through a number system that categorizes every project by a number. We have a process of building an online presence for each number that is vital for the project's success and required to receive a number. This project is specifically designed to support specific individuals who have gained knowledge overtime for this event.
We also will advertise the event, and especially the finished products, through listservs for professional societies outside of Wiki. There are a set of professional societies that have partnered with HGAPS on projects, contributing in-kind support, funding, or both, since 2014, as listed here. Advertising through their channels will not only increase views on the Wiki pages and resources, but it also will share the proof of concept with professional organizations and lay groundwork for them to explore adopting similar models in their own meetings prospectively.

4. Do you have experienced Wikimedia editors to lead the event? Please provide links to the usernames of these individuals.

Yes. As mentioned before, the editors for this event have been specifically building critical wiki skills over the last several months to be prepared for this project. We will also be led by other Wikimedians with several years of experience and receive help from educated scholars for technical information on Psychological pages.

User:Eyoungstrom - link to Metawiki Userpage; co-founder and Executive Director of 501c3; student faculty advisor for UNC Chapel Hill HGAPS Student Club; instructor of record for several WikiEdu classes teaching with Wiki.

User:Cody_naccarato - link to Wikiversity Userpage

5. Do participants have the equipment or skills needed to participate and contribute high quality content? If not, how will you support them?

Our edit-a-thons are being held online. Other work is completed asynchronously. For communication purposes, we will still hold zoom meetings with focus groups for feedback and information. In preparation, we have gathered or created many tutorials and guides on different topics of the edit-a-thon (e.g., an overview of Creative Commons licensing, how to upload materials to the Open Science Framework, how to get them a DOI, how to link these resources to Wikiversity, how to add materials to Wikimedia Commons). These guides will be available to everyone by posting them on open science platforms, but mostly Wikiversity.

6. How will you engage participants after the event(s)?

The Wiki pages that we will be creating or improving aim to share technical information that would be of great interest to students, professors, teachers, and other educational and professional audiences that do not have the resources to be able to attend a traditional conference or meeting. To keep people further motivated to continue working, we will have awards for the best performance. Deciding top contributors will be based on total edits made/character count added, page views, downloaded OSF materials quantity, views on YouTube versions of given educational talks.

We will share the “demonstration project” with all professional societies that have had presentations about HGAPS or previously supported HGAPS projects. These include, but are not limited to, the Association for Psychological Science, the American Psychological Association, the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies, the Society for Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, the Society for Clinical Psychology

7. Are you running any in-person events or activities? If so, you will need to complete the steps outlined on the Risk Assessment protocol related to COVID-19. When you have completed these steps, please provide a link to your completed copy of the risk assessment tool below:

We understand the risk of in-person meetings during this time so we are keeping all activities online and mainly independent. Some HGAPS groups and chapters have been doing hybrid meetings since the end of October 2021, following the local current public health guidelines and those of the host institution (whichever is more cautious). However, for this particular project, we expect it will be a smaller team working mostly asynchronously between a kickoff and wrap-up meeting.

8. Is there anything else you want to tell us about this project?

Prioritization: Though we plan on improving and adding as many resources as possible, we will focus on content related to conference talks, then posters and research materials, and finally some examples of social media and other content. Essentially, we are focusing on sharing the most expensive or traditionally exclusive content first, and adding as much other material as possible to showcase contributions made by people at different stages of career development. This will provide an example, templates, and resources for implementation at future conferences and events going forward.
Timing: We are asking for support for a very specific and short time period. This is crucial for us to comply with local regulations for student contributors. Several of our most engaged contributors are contractually prevented from doing outside work during the academic year, so this is designed as a "sprint" during the gap between Fall and Spring terms so that they can engage in this activity and hone their skills and professional development rather than working other part time jobs or watching their student loans collect more interest.


How will you know if the project is successful and you've met your goals? Please include the following targets:

  • Number of events: 2 -- a kickoff edit-a-thon, and a final push edit-a-thon. In between these events participants will work asynchronously on their editing with real-time and weekly tracking. An interim edit-a-thon or two will convene as necessary to maximize productivity, but we anticipate that it will be more efficient to work asynchronously given differences in contributor schedules and time zones.
  • Number of participants: 60
  • Number of new editors: 2-10; For this particular project, our focus is on individuals who have already obtained wiki skills and are ready to put their skills into action. However, if new members join, we are prepared to help them set up an account and improve their wiki skills.
  • Number of articles created or improved: 50-60
  • Number of repeat participants (for projects that include a series of events): 40


What resources do you have? Include information on who is organizing the project, what they will do, and if you will receive support from anywhere else (in-kind donations or additional funding).

  • Organized by wiki editors within the HGAPS community
  • Supported by --
    • Includes sharing and donation of past slides and posters with CC-BY-SA 3.0 or more current or permissive licensure
    • Facilitated consultation with authors and experts off-Wiki
    • Dissemination of updates and final product through HGAPS social media and professional society listservs of affiliated organizations
  • Editing support from H-GAPS User Group
    • Facilitated consultation with experienced editors from within the HGAPS User Group
    • Volunteer teams who will assist with uploading, formatting, and linking activities to learn new skills and extend the scale of the project
  • HGAPS attendees will bring their laptops and editing skills, and connect appropriately licensed content to Wikiversity, Wikidata, and Wikimedia Commons to provide more and better examples of what HGAPS has done in the past, and what hybrid conferences can do going forward.

What resources do you need? For your funding request, list bullet points for each expense and include a total amount.

Budget and Budget Justification
  • Independent Technical Editor Wages (Rate based on current market wages for equivalent labor at $15.00/hr and estimated required hours at 75) = $1,125
    • Skills and activities: Uploading material to, securing DOI with correct author attribution, linking to Wiki pages; uploading materials with appropriate license to Commons; tagging with appropriate categories; connecting to Wikidata
  • Awards (Prizes for students based on categories such as "Best use of dissemination, Most likely to replicate, etc.”) = $700, with allocation model consistent with past HGAPS edit-a-thons and CODAPAR Grants. Awards based on quantitative metrics (most edits, most uploads, etc.) and made both at the end of a sprint and at a follow-up period (4 weeks) to reward sustained activity (addressing a shortcoming of the "one-off" edit-a-thon model)
  • Research Professional (PhD) Wages = $1,775.
    • Research psychologist will supervise the technical editors and provide consultation and guidance about the interface with Open Science platforms, academic crediting and citations, and other technical research-related issues. Payment will be tied to delivery of project milestones.
  • Indirects (HGAPS will use the 20% rate for F&A costs, as indicated in the Rapid Grant instructions) = $1,000
  • Total = $5,000


Community members are encouraged to endorse your project request here!