Visiting Wikimedian

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Teele Vaalma (in the middle) supported us as a “Visiting Wikimedian” in organizing the Wikimedia Conference 2016

Visiting Wikimedian” is a program by Wikimedia Deutschland (WMDE). The purpose of the program is to share experience and learnings from WMDE with other Wikimedia movement affiliates. The duration of the stay is three to four months.

What is a Visiting Wikimedian?[edit]

Our motivation[edit]

WMDE aims to be a learning partner for the Wikimedia movement. While we already benefit from the vast experience and knowledge that exists among the organizations of the Wikimedia movement, we want to go further: We would like to share our learnings, enable collaboration and team up with our partners to create greater impact together. WMDE, as one of the oldest and largest organisations in the movement, is committed to support the movements’ ability to learn together and to work effectively across chapters.

Over the course of the last four years, we had support by a “Visiting Wikimedian” from another Wikimedia affiliate in organizing the annual Wikimedia Conference (now: Wikimedia Summit) each year. The ultimate goal of the position is to allow the Visiting Wikimedian to apply their learnings to programs and processes in their home organization. Lessons learned can also be shared with the broader movement.

Have a look into the blog posts written by previous Visiting Wikimedians (see below) to know how their experiences were!

Former Visiting Wikimedians[edit]

Do you want to be our Visiting Wikimedian for the Wikimedia Summit 2020?[edit]

We were looking for a Visiting Wikimedian for the next Wikimedia Summit, that will take place in Berlin during April 3–5, 2020. The Visiting Wikimedian program arose from organizing the Wikimedia Conference, thus tasks will focus on supporting the successful implementation of the conference especially in terms of logistics.

Learning Areas[edit]

David Saroyan (on the right) supported us as a Visiting Wikimedian in organizing the Wikimedia Conference 2017

Based on our experiences with the last three “Visiting Wikimedian-ships”, we provide learning opportunities in the following areas:

  • Project management: Learn about creating a project plan, making production schedules, setting up external/internal information- and communication structures, personnel planning and coordination, success and budget monitoring, project documentation
  • Participant management: Learn about registration management and processing, effective communication with participants (before, during, after the conference), arrangements for accommodation, visa, travel etc.
  • Management of event service providers: Learn about including third-party services into the concept of a conference, obtaining and evaluating service offers, coordinating service providers
  • Communication and engagement: Learn about coordinating the production of printed materials and giveaways, facilitating social interaction at conferences
  • Intercultural management: Learn about success factors when working in an international project environment and what to take into consideration when hosting culturally diverse participants
  • Regulatory framework: Learn about legal parameters and safety guidelines for the organization of events (you know, Germans and their rules)
  • BUT, I want to learn more: Is there anything else that interests you in organizing a conference? Hit us up and we’ll try to make it happen

In general, we are open to designing the tasks together with the Visiting Wikimedian according to theirskills, needs and experiences. In addition, the Visiting Wikimedian can spend some time in other teams / departments of Wikimedia Deutschland.


Afek Ben Chahed (2nd from the left) supported us during the Wikimedia Summit 2019

Depending on the legal situation of the Visiting Wikimedian (being a citizen of a member state of the European Union or not), contract details might differ. The general conditions are:

  • Optimally full-time (~40 hours per week; negotiable)
  • Paid traineeship
  • On-site stay at WMDE’s office in Berlin for 3 to 4 months
  • Good English speaking skills are required, German speaking skills are not mandatory (WMDE’s office is bilingual)

In exchange, Wikimedia Deutschland, supports you to learn and benefit from your stay to the best of its ability, and in transferring your learnings to your home affiliate and the movement. In order to be able to design a good learning experience for you, we would like to encourage you to refer to the above mentioned learning opportunities within your application letter and to prioritize them according to your interests and needs.

Application documents needed[edit]

Vira Motorko (2nd from the left) was the Visiting Wikimedian for the Wikimedia Conference 2018

Please send your cover letter (motivational letter) and CV to wmsummit(_AT_) addressing the two project leads, Florian Hauer and Cornelius Kibelka. Application deadline was September 15, 2019. Please cover these four questions within your cover letter (motivation letter):

  • What are your experiences in organizing conferences?
  • Why would you like to work with us?
  • Which of the above mentioned “learning areas” would you like to focus on during your stay?
  • How would you apply the knowledge afterwards back in your home affiliate? Are you planning to organize a conference afterwards?

We encourage people from Emerging Communities, within and beyond Europe to apply for this position. We are committed to equal opportunities and do not discriminate on the basis of, for example, ethnic origin, citizenship, religion or belief, political or other opinion, gender, age, disability, sexual identity or orientation.

Get in touch[edit]

We are always striving to improve this program. If you have any questions, comments or feedback, please reach out to Cornelius Kibelka and Florian Hauer via e-mail to wmsummit(_AT_)