Participants in the workshop at the Wikimedia Tech Age Days, Tunisia, December 2014.
This report presents data on a year of workshops. It examines metrics used across a broad spectrum of programs so that program goals and outcomes can be discussed across different types of programs. It can be used for:
designing and planning future programs,
exploring workshop effectiveness, and
celebrating workshop successes.
The authors recommend using caution drawing conclusions about individual programs based solely on the data presented here, as there is insufficient information about each unique workshop’s context and goals.
The report includes data from 141 workshops held in 17 countries between September of 2013 and December of 2014. The events include a total of 5,659 participants who added over 501,000 bytes to over 105 articles.
Workshops have 5 priority goals selected by more than two thirds of workshop program leaders. These goals are around increasing awareness of Wikimedia projects, bringing in new, and more diverse editors, and increasing editing skills.
As of the report date, workshops are not the most effective programs at retaining new editors. Perhaps methods from other programs, such as edit-a-thons, could be incorporated in order to increase new editor retention.
Workshops where organizers input more hours also tend to have more new users. This could perhaps be because more hours invested in outreach mean more people unfamiliar with Wikimedia attend, or because new users require more hands-on engagement from organizers during the workshop, more investigation is needed to determine the causation.
There are a lot of workshops with a lot of participants, but we don’t know much about them. Out of 141 workshops, 108 reported participants, but 45 reported usernames or input, output, and outcome data. This means that we are limited in associating inputs to outcomes for these workshops and determining actual costs for workshops.
Use the report data for planning future editing workshops. The report summarizes each input, output and outcome metric. For planning, program leaders can use the range of data to know what is generally a high or low number for each metric. Data tables are provided for each workshop, in order to offer readers access to local context information and contacts.
Increase shared learning about workshops through data. Having more data and more measures are key to having a deeper understanding about programs and their outcomes. This includes online data (e.g. articles created) as well as offline data (e.g. budget, volunteer hours, motivation). To successfully translate data into shared learning we need both more data and more ways to share & interpret it. Two ways to increase data are to increase capacity building around data collection, and to improve data collection tools. Two ways to increase sharing and interpreting data, could be to connect program leaders and elevate existing resources to be more visible.