Research:Committee/Areas of interest/Strategic research objectives
The aim of this subgroup is to help formulate the key strategic research objectives for the WMF and Wikimedia community.
Issues to discuss
- Who should be the target of this document? Researchers or funding agencies?
- Will funding be available to promote research on priority topics?
During the first meeting some disagreement emerged as to whether the committee should be involved in "documenting areas and themes of high concern to WMF and the Wikimedia community". Some members expressed concerns that this might be perceived by the research community as an unnecessary endorsement of specific types/areas of research, which would conflict with the principle that the committee should not "influence the direction of research on Wikipedia" and other Wikimedia projects (see this discussion). A tentative agreement was reached on the idea that the committee should be able to publish "a list of topics on which we wish somebody worked". The following proposals emerged as part of a strategy to make this happen:
- facilitate a panel at a major research conference at which some members of this committee might give a presentation on their views on high-value research contributions to Wikipedia. This might be easier to create than "this is what WMF thinks is needed for research".
- create research competitions at major conferences (à la Netflix) as a way to highlight research priorities.