Annual Plan for Fiscal Year 2017–18

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The Wikimedia DC Strategic Plan classifies Wikimedia DC programs into five principal program areas, each of which encompasses a range of programs that share similar goals or methodologies.

The Annual Plan for the 2017–18 fiscal year, which covers the period starting October 1, 2017 and ending September 30, 2018, defines the specific programs that are to be executed within each of these program areas. The measures of success for each program area are defined by the Strategic Plan, and include Wikimedia Foundation global impact metrics and additional Wikimedia DC-defined program objectives.

Institutional Partnership

The institutional partnership program area includes programs whose principal objective is to leverage the resources, holdings, and expertise of institutions in the cultural, academic, and government sectors to improve the Wikimedia projects and other free knowledge repositories. This is achieved both through the direct contribution of institutional records, collections, and other holdings to such repositories under suitable free licenses, and through the participation of institutional staff and other affiliated individuals in such projects.

Wikimedia DC aims to carry out two principal institutional partnership programs during the 2017–18 fiscal year: collaborative editing events and Wikidata seminars. In aggregate, these programs will engage at least 25 institutional partners, a 25% increase from the prior fiscal year.

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC will continue to utilize collaborative editing events as our principal institutional partnership program. We aim to hold at least 42 editing events with institutional partners distributed across a spectrum of institutional categories, including GLAMs, academic institutions, government agencies, professional associations, and NGOs. This represents a 25% increase from the 2016-17 fiscal year. Of these 42 events, we plan to hold at least 13 editing events aimed at improving diversity of participation and content, representing 30% of the total activity in this program.

During the 2016–17 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC hosted several seminars with the aim of providing Wikidata training to partner institution staff; Wikidata continues to be a topic of significant interest for numerous institutions, and we plan to continue the seminar program to address this need. During the 2017–18 fiscal year, we aim to hold at least 12 Wikidata seminars for key institutional partners, including the Library of Congress, the National Archives, and the Smithsonian Institution.

Content Development

The content development program area consists of programs whose principal objective is to directly facilitate the creation of high-quality content for the Wikimedia projects. Content development programs represent a new area of activity for Wikimedia DC. These programs have the potential to deliver significant impact at low cost. Wikimedia DC aims to carry out two principal content development programs during the 2017–18 fiscal year: photography contests and content development fellowships.

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC plans to organize at least one photography contest aimed at the collection of high-quality photographs for use across the Wikimedia projects. We are already engaged in planning the Wiki Science Competition contest early in the fiscal year, and will evaluate additional photography contest facilitation opportunities as they arise.

In past fiscal years, Wikimedia DC experimented with a book grant program, which directly funded the purchase of books to be used as sources for articles. During the 2017–18 fiscal year, we will develop a more sophisticated content fellowship program, which will provide funding for book purchases, facilitation of access to online sources, and other support to a selected set of editors who will commit to developing recognized high-quality content using these resources. We aim to support 5 content development fellowships over the course of the fiscal year, including at least 2 content development fellowships on diversity topics, representing 40% of the activity in this program.

Training and Support

The training and support program area includes programs whose principal objectives consist of providing professional development opportunities and non-financial resources to volunteer contributors to the Wikimedia projects. Wikimedia DC aims to carry out one principal training and support program, a boot camp, during the 2017–18 fiscal year.

Wikimedia DC has supported volunteer training and development for high-performing Wikimedia project contributors through the GLAM Boot Camp model. We will continue this program, with the aim of holding one boot camp during the 2017–18 fiscal year. The target audience of the boot camp will include current and potential Wikimedia project organizers and event facilitators from across the United States, and the event will aim to increase the participation of under-represented communities in these activities.

Grantmaking and Sponsorship

The grantmaking and sponsorship program area includes programs whose principal objective is to provide direct financial support to individuals, groups, and organizations within the Wikimedia movement. These programs include both direct grantmaking activities, where Wikimedia DC evaluates and selects grantees, as well as fiscal sponsorships, where Wikimedia DC acts as a financial administrator for Wikimedia Foundation or third-party grants to eligible groups or organizations.

Wikimedia DC aims to carry out two principal grantmaking and sponsorship programs during the 2017–18 fiscal year: fiscal sponsorships and guided sponsorships. In aggregate, these programs will allow us to provide an aggregate of $150,000 in grant funding.

Wikimedia DC continued to provide a significant level of fiscal sponsorship support during the prior fiscal year, administering grant funding for the international Art+Feminism campaign as well as WikiConference North America. During the 2017–18 fiscal year, we aim to continue and further expand the range of fiscal sponsorships, administering a minimum of 2 grants under fiscal sponsorship with an aggregate grant value of at least $125,000.

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC will introduce a new form of fiscal sponsorship program, guided sponsorships, through which we will partner with selected individuals and groups seeking Wikimedia Foundation grants to provide assistance with grant application development and program planning; measurement, evaluation, and reporting; and other key elements of program execution. The program will allow us to leverage our organizational experience with movement grantmaking processes to support less experienced grantees, delivering improved grant application quality, facilitating program planning and reporting, and enhancing grant impact across the movement. In total, we aim to support at least '5 grantees' with an aggregate grant value of at least 25,000.

Public Policy

The public policy program area includes programs whose principal objective is to encourage regulatory and legislative changes that will benefit the Wikimedia projects and the broader free knowledge and culture movement. During the 2017–18 fiscal year, our public policy efforts will continue to explore new directions. To the extent possible, we will coordinate our efforts with those of the Wikimedia Foundation's public policy department, other chapters, users groups, and other organizations.

Wikimedia DC has previously engaged in advocacy on copyright matters. We aim to continue this during the 2017–18 fiscal year, and will submit further comments on this topic to regulatory agencies as suitable opportunities arise. We will monitor other potential areas of public policy activity, including issues related to mass digitization, intellectual property reforms, and the public domain.



During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC intends to continue streamlining its financial processes, with a particular focus on improving the fiscal sponsorship payment process. In particular, we will make efforts to reduce the time required to issue payments and reimbursements, with an aim to bring the dollar-weighted average days payable to 15 days, representing a 35% improvement over the current average of 23 days.


During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC intends to conduct an internal governance review, which will evaluate best practices from across the Wikimedia movement and the general nonprofit community to identify gaps and areas of potential improvement in our governance strategy and practices. The review will include input from a range of sources, including past assessments conducted by the Wikimedia Foundation grantmaking team and published guidelines and best practices from government and non-government sources.

Measurement, Evaluation, and Reporting

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC aims to improve its practices for program measurement, evaluation, and reporting. We will introduce a new quarterly reporting format that will include program metrics and results, program stories and media coverage, and quarterly and year-to-date evaluation of program objectives, financial performance, and budgetary trends.

Volunteer Development and Management

During the 2017–18 fiscal year, Wikimedia DC plans to initiate a structured volunteer development and management program. We will begin by identifying and defining volunteer needs and roles across the organization, and use these definitions to develop a model for volunteer recruitment, management, and recognition; by the end of the fiscal year, we aim to have an integrated set of tools and workflows that will allow us to manage volunteer participation across each of our programs and to provide volunteers with structured opportunities for networking, professional development, and recognition.