Shared Knowledge/Annual plan 2020
This is the Annual plan of the activities of Shared Knowledge for 2020. It is a page linked to from the Grants:Simple/Applications/Macedonian User Groups/2020.
The Education programme has proved to be a successful way for engaging new users to contribute to the Macedonian Wikipedia and subsequently fill the content gaps on specialist topics through collaboration with educational institutions. The model of collaboration consists of running workshops on the process of editing Wikipedia articles intended for students who are going to apply this knowledge to create or improve Wikipedia articles as an assignment of the grading process.
Our most successful institution proved to be Josip Broz – Tito Grammar School in Skopje, where several hundred students create or improve hundreds of Wikipedia articles on topics in physics.
The major strength of the programme so far has been the exceptional quality of editing, which has lead to the promotion of several featured articles and good articles on the Macedonian Wikipedia.
However, despite the wide reach and positive outcome of the activities, the following three problems have remained present for years:
- low number of educational institutions involved;
- low retention rate of participants; and
- limited geographic distribution.
The planned educational activities for 2020 are shaped in a way to address the identified problems. First, we plan to expand the programme to at least two other educational institutions. Considering the size of our educational team and the other available resources, we have come to the conclusion that we can manage activities at two additional institutions while keeping the high quality of editing at the same time. Second, we plan to continue with the lectures about the processes of editing Wikipedia articles, uploading files on Wikimedia Commons and generating items on Wikidata that will be given to interested participants in three other cities in Macedonia. The target audience of these lectures will be broader than students attending the traditional educational institutions and will also include others willing to acquire new knowledge. Third, we also plan to continued with the already introduced editing contest intended only for students participating in the Education programme through the model of collaboration with educational institutions. This activity will have to stimulate participation through the awarding of prizes and also divert participants' attention to other topics of interest as an attempt to both increase retention and further fill the content gaps.
Trainings and mentorship
Considering the weaknesses of the educational activities conducted in the schools so far we have realized the great significance of a quality training for teachers who will run the program so one.
Regarding the age and computer skills of the teachers in Macedonia we have realized that more comprehensive training in a manner of a close mentorship would be convenient and needed for the successful further implementation of the activities of the educational program on their classes and lectures using Wikipedia.
These activities will include training lectures with the teachers from different schools monthly or several times depending on their time in a time frame between 45 minutes to 1 hour with each teacher.
Editing contest for students
As in the previous years in 2020 we are also planning to continue with the already introduced editing contest intended only for students participating in the Education programme through the model of collaboration with educational institutions.
This activity will be shared with other affiliate GLAM Macedonia. We will have to stimulate participation through the awarding of prizes and also divert participants' attention to other topics of interest as an attempt to both increase retention and further fill the content gaps.
The SMART objectives of the Education programe are the following:
- to have at least 15 teachers included in mentorship programme during the year;
- to have at least 165 participants from the Education programme and editing contest students sub-programme during the year;
- to expand the activities of the Education programme in three schools through the teachers engaged in the project;
- to introduce Wikipedia as an educative tool and platform in schools, educational institutions and academic community as much as possible;
- to increase the number of content provided within the activities in education, creating at least 440 content pages.
Community is the bedrock of the maintaining and the growth of the Wikipedia content and its quality. Thus the community is the core and key important base of the large scope of the activities in which variety number of members are involved contributing by providing content within thematic projects.
Projects which are aimed to support and grow the community include activities focused on growth of the content by editing challenges and events where members of the community are engaged in creating, editing and improving articles, support of content providing activities in images and editing articles on volunteers applying on open calls on photographic contest of photohunt as well as instruction provided to newly recruited and engaged members willing to contribute and share their knowledge but lack skills on editing on Wikipedia.
The editing challenges primarily aim to increase the content quality and fill content gaps on the Wikimedia project but also to reach out to specialist groups of people and boost more productive editing by the experienced editors. The scope of the editing challenges in 2020 will remain unchanged compared to 2017, 2018, and 2019, and they will thus include: edit-a-thons, editing contests, editing days and editing weekends.
The edit-a-thons have underwent a successful transition from community events intended for experienced users towards outreach events intended for new editors. Last three years all of the edit-a-thons have been organized with interested group comprised of mostly highly skilled and motivated individuals possessing high degree of knowledge on a certain topic which is decided in advance in order to cover the lack of the content on articles on those topics on Wikipedia. In previous years, beside organizing our own edit-a-thons, we entirely helped on 4 other edit-a-thons providing instruction to the participants and logistical support on the events. The number of edit-a-thons will be maintained to four events during the year.
The editing contests have drastically improved the coverage of underrepresented topics and have also led to re-activating of users who have not been active for a pretty long time. They have also resulted in high-quality editing with several featured articles and good articles on the Macedonian Wikipedia, while in the last year we reached the goal of 100,000 articles on Macedonian Wikipedia. Because the goal of the editing contests focus on adding quality content, they mostly focus on engaging the community of experienced users, yet the participation of newly registered users is also welcome. There are no major changes that we expect to make to the editing contests during the year with regards to the selected topics and the awards distribution. The number of contests that will take place during the year will be four, while the Wikimedia CEE Spring in joint collaboration with the other communities from Central and Eastern Europe will be also a possibility for the users to participate.
The positive evaluation of our editing days and weekends as zero-budget projects that encourage participation of community members in writing articles on a pre-selected underrepresented topic during a 24-hour and 48-periods, respectively, was convincing enough to include these two projects anew. These editing challenges are especially suitable for holidays and commemorating days but can also be used to coordinate the community towards generating local content from the available sources that we have. Thus for this year we decided to have twenty editing days and weekends each during the year.
The relation between the Wikimedia affiliate and the community as a key for healthy development of the movement during the year will be enhanced through working equally on extending support for conducting photohunts, introduction of the Technical Innovations, growing the community through engaging highly educated and skilled persons through personal sketch lessons and building up the community through frequent gatherings and meet-ups as well as increased participation in international events and conferences. As Macedonian Wikipedia lack a lot of technical tools, we would like to address this problem with open call for applications from students and given micro-grants.
The photohunts have established as a successful low-budget project with high cost-effectiveness. Despite the fact that this project helps the community members to get financial support for conducting hunts for images, the project also rewards special right to the community rather than the regulatory bodies of the affiliate to make the final decision on delivering support. Considering the broadening of the scope of the photohunts with cultural events which was done in the last year, we intend to continue with photohunts with largely broadened offered list and scope for taking images with encyclopedical value, which can be properly accommodated in our entire eco-system, which is a good opportunity to attract interest not only from the experienced editors but also from the new users engaged in the other programmes, which proved to be a case last year where we have photohunts granted to a participants from the Wiki Camp, interested professional and amateur photographs.
Considering the growing need of keeping the quality besides the number of content which has already overreached 100.000 articles on Macedonian Wikipedia as well as the immense need of introducing and including the technical innovations which constantly appears in the everyday life we decided to introduce Technical Innovations projects within the community support sub-program. This project will involve activities oriented towards introducing technical innovation both as a content in Wikipedia and also as a tools and bots involved in the work on Wikipedia.
Wikisketch Lessons have started as a new kind of activity intended to grow up the knowledge about Wikipedia by providing quick and fast training for working on Wikipedia by creating and editing articles, uploading images, doing a research on highly skilled individuals who are not yet contributing users on Wikipedia. The participants who have been instructed for editing and working on Wikipedia are carefully chosen primarily from the acquaintances known to have a higher degree of knowledge on certain topics which lack or are scarcely covered with articles on Macedonian Wikipedia. The instructions are given directly and individually with a person in a time span between 30 minutes and hour where the participants are given a sketch of a Wikipedia articles which they follow as a pattern in creating and editing new articles by their own choice with the support of skilled editors who show them editing with the three main tool editors: coded, visual and the translation tool with mandatory embedding image, hyperlink and references. For 2020, we plan to extend and implement Wikisketch lessons throughout the entire year, every month during a week we will conduct fast Wikisketch lessons to individuals having experience and expertise in a field about which Wikipedia lacks content.
The frequency of community gatherings and meet-ups has sharply decreased in the last couple of years, whereas the Wikipedia Day celebrations remain the only formal events that socialize number of community members. For that purpose, apart from the Wikipedia Day celebration, we also plan to revive the meet-ups that took place on a regular basis in the past.
The expeditionary projects have had enormous impact on the field research capabilities of our members over the last couple of years and have contributed to the creation of local content from multiple sources that had not been used for editing before as well as high-quality images of different places in Macedonia with several featured pictures and quality image on Wikimedia Commons, so far. Moreover, expeditions have significant impact towards the general Wikimedian community and the public, thus through social media, exhibition and presentations on all other projects, considerable and constant number of new members are joining on every expedition which is an indicator about the success and the outreach significance of this programme.
Considering the aim to grow and expand the community this year we plan to organize the expeditions with close collaboration with highly skilled and specialized individuals and groups such as the Student's Geographical Society and professors of Geography for the Geoexpeditions along with the Mountaneering and hiking club "Transverzalec" which is our collaborator for three consecutive years, professor and students of archaeology from the Ss. Cyril and Methodius University for the archaeoexpeditions and local support for the Wikiexpeditions. The plans and the implementation of the expeditions will be closely defined with those groups which will provide help in expertise, experience, equipment and staff which will eventually became part of the community being instructed and skillfully contributing on Wikipedia.
The local content creation following our expeditionary projects regularly includes editing of highly informative items on Wikidata. This practice was started with the expeditions during 2016, when most of the statements relevant for the different kinds of articles were identified, and was mastered during the first half of 2017. The statements used to develop an empty item to a highly informative one range from generic that can be found in every item (definition, image, country of location, administrative entity of location, coordinate location etc.) and specific that depend on the thematic nature of the underlying article (mouth for rivers, patron saint(s) for churches, mountains for peaks, etc.). As a consequence, our intensive work on Wikidata has eventually led to the creation of a valuable database that is already used as a source for transferring general information across Wikipedia articles. Yet, another important achievement that even Wikidata analysts have noted in their reports is the territorial coverage of Macedonia with Wikidata items containing geographic coordinates. The first mention of this sort was made in the October 2016 report, where Macedonia was listed among the nine noticeable areas with many new items containing coordinate locations.
Wiki Loves Photographic Contest
Photographic contests are proved to have considerable impact to towards the growth of community and providing high quality images for further use as a content on Wikipedia and public domain. Hence, in 2020 we will continue with organization of photographic contest which will focus on Science and will last for a longer period in order to include the national, regional and local institutions throughout the entire country for support and recruit a larger involvement of different level contributors beside just the attracted competitors.
The SMART objectives of the Community support programme are the following:
- to increase the number of participants (at least 281) in all project within the Community support sub-programme during the year;
- to bring and engage 187 newly registered users from the Community support sub-programme during the year;
- to increase the number of content pages (at least 7,842) created or improved on the Wikimedia projects from the Community support sub-programme during the year;
- to increase the number and percentage of photographs (at least 70%) used in Wikipedia articles from the Community support sub-programme during the year;
- to increase the volunteer work (at least 9,000 hours) on the Community support sub-programme during the year;
- to include innovations, new methods, skills and knowledge in the programs and further work of the Community sub-programe.
Partnerships have proven to be successful and useful way for benefiting in both ways by providing specific content in possession of specialized institutions and organization as well as bringing new participants to the activities and the entire Wikimedia movement. The scope and the name of this program have been changed from its originally GLAM cooperation with galleries, libraries, archives and museums to the broader scope of Partnership after the fruitful collaboration and engagement of different organizations from the interest groups, NGO's, local government oriented and dealing with maters of public interest regarding cultural heritage, arts, science, sports, information which is suitable for Wikimedia content.
Cultural heritage is a topic which has always been suitable to provide significant content on Wikimedia projects not only Wikipedia, but Commons, Wikibooks, Wikidata and other projects by the partnership collaboration of including and engaging different specialized institutions and organizations working and dealing with matters regarding the broad scope of the Cultural Heritage. Thus this year we are planning to run two projects in partnership with local governmental institutions and specialized museum.
WikiStreets project will be conducted in the partnership with the municipalities and their bodies and agencies of the local self-government. Within this project we plan to make and set up special plates with QR-codes leading to Wikipedia articles on streets in the cities or town in Macedonia which are remarkable and have special historic and cultural significance.
Shared Knowledge already conducted similar QR-codes project as Skopje Zoo project. Shared Knowledge aim to conduct similar QR-code plaques to the buildings on some street, through which visitors will be able to access the Wikipedia articles of that specific building, or history building.
Considering the century long tradition and history of growing tobacco in Macedonia we plan to conduct a joint project in partnership with the Museum of tobacco which is located in the city of Prilep and covers the history and culture of cultivating tobacco in Macedonia. Within this project we plan to photograph, document and digitize thus to provide content on Wikipedia from the permanent exhibition and collection of the museum regarding tobacco.
The success of the photographic collaboration between Shared Knowledge and Wiki Education Brazil in 2017 and photographic collaboration between Shared Knowledge and Wikimedia Poland in 2018 has been motivating for us to introduce a separate sub-programme on organizing exhibitions. The model of the photographic collaboration that we have worked out helps to promote the cultural and natural heritage of the collaborating countries through images displayed at exhibitions but it also attracts community members to edit content on topics related to the collaborating country. In this way, the exhibitions can be easily connected to the editing challenges in our eco-system. In 2020 we plan to continue with the photographic collaboration that will result in having one exhibitions.
The SMART objectives of the Partnership sub-programme are the following:
- to include and involve 4 new institutions in the Partnership sub-programme during the year;
- to establish 2 new and deepen the already established partnership collaboration during the year;
- to increase the number of content pages and photographs (at least 345) created or improved on the Wikimedia projects from the project cooperation within the Partnership sub-programme during the year;
- to raise the awareness of the broader public, institutions and organizations for the possibilities of Wikipedia through the Partnership sub-programme.
The following table grades the eight sub-programmes of the four programmes on a priority scale with high, medium or low priority. The grading is mainly based on the metrics derived from the SMART objectives for each programme.