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Grants:TPS/HstryQT/American Association of Museums

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User name
User location (country)
United States
Event name
American Association of Museums Annual Meeting & Museum Expo
Event Web site
Event date(s)
April 29 - May 2, 2012
Event location (city)
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Amount requested (remember to specify currency!)

Budget breakdown[edit]

This budget represents the highest cost we would be requesting. We are currently waiting to hear back on two scholarship opportunities that would reduce this total. The AAM Emerging Museum Professional scholarship has the potential to cover all of Sarah Stierch's registration, travel, and accommodation needs. An international presenter scholarship for Àlex Hinojo would put $500 toward his flight. These totals will be updated as absolutely soon as possible upon our notice. A note will be placed on the talk page. In the meantime, we thought it was important to move forward with the review of this grant. Thanks so much.

Description Participant Cost/day Days - AAM Funding[1] Total
Registration Liam Wyatt (international speaker) 335 /full - - 335
Àlex Hinojo (international speaker) 335 /full - - 335
Sarah Stierch (member, student, speaker) 265 /full - - [2] 265
Dominic McDevitt-Parks (member, student) 265 /full - - 265
Accommodations Liam Wyatt 185[3] 5 - 1048
Àlex Hinojo (sharing room with Liam) 0 - - 0
Sarah Stierch (sharing room with Lori) 0 - - 0
Dominic McDevitt-Parks 189[3] 3 - 643
Liam Wyatt (Traveling to and from Sydney) 2088 - 1000 [4] 1088
Àlex Hinojo (Traveling to/from Barcelona) 1,200 - TBD (Possible 500)[5] 1200
Sarah Stierch (Traveling to/from DC) 356 - - [2] 356
Dominic McDevitt-Parks (From CA / To Boston) 327 - 0 327
Meals & incidentals [6] Core days x 4 participants 53 4 - 848
Travel days x 4 participants 40 2 - 320
Grand total $7,030 (to be updated)
[1] We have made great efforts to utilize all possible scholarships and funding options through AAM.

[2] Sarah has applied for an Emerging Museum Professional scholarship, which would pay for flight, registration, lodging, and incidentals. However, this scholarship is extremely hard to obtain (hundreds of students submit every year) and we are moving forward under the assumption that she likely will not receive it. We will be notified on February 28th and the budget will be updated accordingly then. Update: On March 12, 2012 we received word that Sarah wasn't chosen for the EMP scholarship.

[3] + 13.4% state and city room tax

[4] Liam has been guaranteed a $500 scholarship from the AAM Public Relations and Marketing Committee and a $500 scholarship from AAM as an international presenter.

[5] Àlex Hinojo can potentially receive a $500 scholarship from AAM as an international presenter.

[6] Minneapolis rates (x75%): Meals & Incidentals core days: 53/day | Meals & Incidentals first/last days of travel: 40/day

All costs are in USD.
An advanced disbursement of funds is requested. If possible, distribution by March 15th is requested. This date is the 6-week point and the absolute latest we would like to book flights, which in some cases cannot have funds fronted by the attendee.

Proposed Participation[edit]

This participation grant is being submitted by Lori Phillips, the 2012 US Cultural Partnerships Coordinator, on behalf of the group of Wikimedians who will be representing GLAM-WIKI in three sessions at the American Association of Museums Annual Meeting. To be clear, the budget does not include funding for Phillips' participation, but does include funding for four additional current and former Wikipedians in Residence: Liam Wyatt, Sarah Stierch, Àlex Hinojo, and Dominic McDevitt-Parks. The role of each of these participants will be described in full below.


The American Association of Museums (AAM) is the largest museum conference in the United States, serving thousands of museum professionals from around the world through over 150 sessions and workshops on major themes in museum theory and best practice. The AAM Annual Meeting is considered to be the largest gathering of museum professionals in the world, attracting more than 5,000 attendees from the US and abroad. This conference serves the mainstream audience of cultural professionals, rather than the niche groups that we have so far connected with at conferences such as Museum Computer Network and Museums and the Web. Museum technologists no longer need convincing. Now, our participation at AAM will offer us an unprecedented chance to illustrate to institutional decision makers -the curators, the exhibit designers, and the museum directors- that Wikipedia is a serious tool that will help them further their missions. The fact that AAM has given a group of Wikipedians three stages upon which to share our work shows that the mainstream museum community is ready to listen.

Since 2010 the GLAM-WIKI community has been seeking to gain recognition from AAM because it would so clearly legitimize our efforts within the United States and beyond. Early on our efforts to connect were rebuffed, but beginning in May and June of 2011 we began to receive more significant attention from the organization. For example, in June 2011 AAM's Center for the Future of Museums began a dialogue on Twitter around the discussion, "Wikipedians in Residence: Trend or Fad?" Now, the Center for the Future of Museum's newly released TrendsWatch Report includes Wikipedians in Residence as a trend in participatory engagement and digitally sharing resources. We're proud to have gained the respect of AAM, which is shown by their willingness to incorporate Wikimedia into three facets of their conference; now we're happy to have the chance to connect with this fresh audience and more firmly establish GLAM-WIKI as an important partner in these institutions.


In July 2011, The GLAM-WIKI community was approached by the AAM program planning committee and asked to submit a proposal for a panel on Wikipedians in Residence for the 2012 annual meeting. We submitted a proposal with the endorsement of the AAM Media and Technology Committee and the Public Relations and Marketing Committee, and learned in August that our proposal was ranked #1 among the over one hundred submitted proposals. We have been told that our session, "Wikipedia in the Museums: Lessons from Wikipedians in Residence," is one of the most highly anticipated at the conference and is expected to be highly attended.

Later, we were asked to be a part of the AAM Online Conference, an honor that is requested of only ten of the very best and most relevant sessions of the conference. We will be repeating our Wikipedian in Residence panel for this virtual session. Lastly, we were later asked to be a part of the "Marketplace of Ideas," a two hour open house that allows attendees to browse a selection of mini-workshops that present major ideas in the field. We will present Wikipedia basics alongside four other major online platforms such as Mozilla and Yelp.

The three events that we will be taking part in include:

  • Wikipedia in the Museum: Lessons from Wikipedians in Residence: We aim to share the context of GLAM-WIKI and Wikipedians in Residence, types of outreach events, methods for connecting with the Wikimedia community, and resources for helping museums get started in a cooperation with Wikimedia.
  • Virtual Session: A repeat of the Wikipedian in Residence panel, but within a virtual, interactive setting with polling, live chat, and live Twitter feed. This will be recorded and available for future viewing.
  • Marketplace of Ideas: An informal table presenting "What to do and What not to do" as a museum in Wikipedia. Practical first steps in getting started with a Wikipedia collaboration.

Note on number of participants[edit]

The nature of Wikimedia's presence at this conference is in proportion to both the high-profile nature of the event within the cultural sphere and the level of importance that this event has for Wikimedia in sharing our work and fostering future collaborations. These points are stated in more detail in the Goals and Impact sections below. The AAM programming committee was inspired by Wikimedia's presence at Communicating the Museum in Dusseldorf, Germany, where seven representatives from the GLAM-Wiki community presented, networked, and provided outreach to cultural professionals. Our opportunity at AAM has similar goals but actually has a much higher level of impact, because of the vast visibility of the conference itself and because we have been asked to present not one session, but two, including an online session that will achieve exponential visibility and access, and through a Marketplace of Ideas session, which will allow attendees to receive practical, hands-on advice in a more informal setting.

Our session is unprecedented in that it brings together four Wikipedians in Residence in one panel to share our collective wisdom. We all have specific strengths and have run very different projects at our institutions. Because we are doing three events, some of which may be overlapping, we required a fifth Wikipedian, ideally a Wikipedian in Residence, to lead in running the Marketplace event and to serve as support for our additional sessions. It is not expected that this type of group participation will be required for future events. It is the nature of this conference as an important kick off to broader GLAM-WIKI US cooperations within the AAM sphere that leads to the unique necessity of requiring support for this type of group participation.

Individual roles[edit]

  • Liam Wyatt: Former Cultural Partnerships Fellow, Wikimedia Foundation
AAM specifically requested that Liam speak in this session, due to his global reputation in establishing GLAM-WIKI. Liam will be opening up the panel & virtual session with context and background about the Wikipedian in Residence concept and GLAM-WIKI more generally, offering his insights about the initiative as a whole and thoughts on where the GLAM-WIKI community will be going moving forward.
Sarah has made a name for herself as a speaker and outreach coordinator in both the GLAM and User-retention spheres. As the Wikipedian in Residence of the Smithsonian Institution she has facilitated projects in a number of the most high-profile institutions in the US. In the panel and virtual session, Sarah will share her experiences facilitating outreach events for staff within large institutions as well as practical methods for carrying out events such as edit-a-thons and image donations.
Àlex has promoted GLAM-WIKI cooperations throughout the Barcelona cultural community, starting out as the Wikipedian in Residence at the Museu Picasso. He is unique in his breadth of experience coordinating translation efforts, article creation, image donations, educational programming, and many outreach events for a variety of audiences at institutions across Spain. He is also the one participant who also took part in the Communicating the Museum conference in Dusseldorf, and has helped throughout the preparation of this event in talking through the successes and challenges of that massive effort, and moving forward with how to best utilize our time at this important conference. In the panel and virtual session, Àlex will share the importance of connecting with the Wikimedia community and his insights on translation efforts and QRpedia.
Dominic has become the face of one of the most publicized Wikimedia cooperations in the US at the National Archives, coordinating a massive donation of archival holdings and establishing a model for Scan-a-thons. Dominic will be leading the Marketplace of Ideas workshop, where he'll share his insights about what museums should and should not do when beginning a Wikimedia cooperation. His understanding of both archives and museums needs, technical and outreach scenarios, and his background working across multiple Wikimedia projects (Wikipedia, Commons, and Wikisource) all make him ideal for tackling any question that may arise during this informal Q & A session.

Relation to mission[edit]

Wikimedia's mission to freely and openly share knowledge aligns closely with the missions of cultural institutions, who have an ethical obligation to make their collections and resources as accessible as possible. Broadly, the GLAM-WIKI initiative serves as a plank for many of the objectives and priorities in the Strategic Plan. These include:

  • Expanding public awareness and support for the Wikimedia movement,
  • Encouraging diversity by conducting outreach among groups that have the potential to bring new expertise to the projects, and;
  • Connecting Wikimedia projects with the work of institutions of culture and learning

Our presentations will specifically address this alignment of missions by providing background on GLAM-Wikimedia collaborations, sharing our experiences as Wikipedians within cultural institutions, and providing resources for institutions to get started in their own cooperations.

Goal and Expected Impact[edit]


Our participation at the American Association of Museums Annual Meeting will serve to facilitate the increased sharing of resources and expertise from museums to Wikimedia. By providing resources through two presentations and a workshop, the participants aim to equip interested cultural professionals with the tools needed to connect with the Wikimedia community and to establish efficient, effective cooperations that are mutually beneficial to the institution and Wikimedia.


Cultural institutions are now expected to increase accessibility to their collections, research, and holdings through the digitization of resources. This has led GLAMs to look more seriously at Wikimedia, an online platform and community that aligns squarely with this vision of access and sharing knowledge. While this is often what leads museums to first look to Wikimedia, the GLAM-WIKI community aims to use this as a gateway to a more established, ongoing cooperation that is much more than one-off content donations, but instead focuses on the sharing of institutional expertise through staff training, local Wikimedian outreach, and other events that encourage getting resources out of the filing cabinets and into Wikipedia.

In this way, our presence at AAM will impact both the museum field and Wikimedia. Our sessions will provide cultural organizations a way to share content and will provide Wikimedia with deeper levels of knowledge.