Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees/Call for feedback: Board of Trustees elections

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Problem to Solve[edit]

The Wikimedia Foundation and the movement have grown over the past ten years, and the Board has largely remained the same in structure and process. In the 2019 governance review, capacity, performance, and lack of representation of the movement’s diversity were noted as concerns.

In 2021, some of these concerns were discussed during the Call for Feedback: Community Board seats. The 2021 Board of Trustees election included updated practices to start to address the concerns listed above. Two additional seats were added to address the Board’s capacity needs. Single transferable voting was used to improve the opportunity for representation of the movement’s diversity. The trustees shared their skills and asked candidates to share theirs to inform voters. Broad and multilingual outreach sought out candidates and voters in many communities on many communication channels.

During this 2022 Call for Feedback we hope to identify additional solutions to reflect the diversity of the movement on the Board. Additionally, we want to use this opportunity to learn from the community about engaging with candidates during the election process.

Call for Feedback Design[edit]

With this Call for Feedback, we are taking a different approach that incorporates community feedback from the 2021 process. Instead of leading with proposals, the Call is framed around key questions.  The intention is to inspire collective conversation and collaborative proposal development.

Thank you for taking the time to participate in this Call for Feedback and helping to form a more diverse and better performing Board of Trustees.

Key questions[edit]

  1. What is the best way to ensure more diverse representation among elected candidates?
  1. What are the expectations for the candidates during the election?
  1. How should affiliates participate in the elections?


There is one additional question that may be presented during the Call about selection processes. This question is still under discussion, but the Board wanted to give insight into the confirmed questions as soon as possible. Hopefully if an additional question is going to be asked, it will be ready during the first week of the Call for Feedback.

Discuss the key questions

How to participate[edit]

Movement Strategy and Governance staff are able to support conversations in many languages. Discussions are welcome in any language, although we may need to rely on volunteer translators to help summarize languages we do not have on staff. You can find links to conversations in many languages in a table on the Discuss Key Questions page. You can find conversation on the Telegram Board selection chat. Contact a facilitator in your region to plan a community conversation or provide feedback.

Timeline[edit]

  • 23 December: Announcement of Call for Feedback
  • 10 January: Call for Feedback opens
  • 16 February: Call for Feedback closes
  • 26 February: Publish final report of the Call for Feedback

Each week the Movement Strategy and Governance team will publish a weekly report to capture the feedback and discussion happening during the previous week.

Useful background information[edit]

The Board of Trustees is the governing body for the Wikimedia Foundation, a +450 staff organization supporting an international movement formed by hundreds of projects, communities, and affiliates. The Board’s sole role is to oversee the management of the Wikimedia Foundation. This includes:

  • Participating in setting the Wikimedia Foundation’s long-term strategy.
  • Monitoring activities and finances to ensure that finances are healthy, mission-aligned and compliant with legal obligations.
  • Hiring, managing, advising, and setting compensation for the Wikimedia Foundation’s CEO.

More information is available in the Board Handbook.

See also[edit]