Internal:Partnership guide

From Wikimedia District of Columbia
Revision as of 03:16, 13 March 2013 by James Hare (talk | contribs) (Event logistics)
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Status: Draft

This document details the strategy by which Wikimedia District of Columbia will engage with partner organizations in holding outreach events and for other purposes.


WIkimedia DC benefits when it has the opportunity to partner with organizations on events that further the mission of the organization. Partnerships allow us to share resources and experience, to include more people into our organization, and to work on innovative projects based on a common interest. Wikimedia DC has partnered with several institutions in the Washington, D.C. area, including high-profile organizations like the Library of Congress, and we will continue to maintain and pursue these kinds of partnerships.

This plan is developed to ensure that Wikimedia DC gets the greatest benefit possible out of a partnership, and to ensure that Wikimedia DC can provide the greatest benefit possible for its partners. A quality partnership requires the active involvement of Wikimedia DC, and this plan describes how to achieve this.


Under the Delegation of Authority Policy, the President of Wikimedia DC has the authority to enter into agreements and carry out transactions in the course of ordinary business, provided that he or she consults with the Board of Directors where feasible. The policy describes specific exceptions to the authority granted to the President.

Wikimedia DC will not enter into partnerships that do not further the mission of Wikimedia DC. Further, Wikimedia DC will not enter into partnerships that would jeopardize its status as a Section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization or would otherwise violate the law. For example, a partnership involving a political organization for the purpose of electioneering would be inappropriate, as would a partnership for a project contrary to the Wikimedia movement's values.

The President may determine at his or her discretion whether Wikimedia DC can pursue a particular partnership. The Treasurer has the authority to deny funding for any program or expense that would jeopardize Wikimedia DC's financial position or would violate relevant laws and regulations.

Tracking partnerships

The Technology Committee is responsible for maintaining a central database for Wikimedia DC to store information regarding the persons and institutions it has contacted. The purpose of this is to create an institutional record of inter-organizational relationships that anyone working under Wikimedia DC's employ can use. This database should include:

  • Name of partnering institution
  • Name of contact(s) at partnering institution
  • Contact information for contact(s) at partnering institution
  • Events and programs pursued with partnering institution
  • Resources, financial and in-kind, contributed to or received from the partnering institution.
  • Name and contact information of the Wikimedia DC representative adding the information

When a Wikimedia DC officer, director, staff member, or volunteer ("Wikimedia DC representative") engages with a representative of a partnering institution, the Wikimedia DC representative is responsible for recording this information into the database.

Event logistics

Appointed Representative—The President or the Event Coordinator should appoint a specific person or persons to represent Wikimedia DC at a planned event. The responsibility of the representative(s) is to assist with organizing the event beforehand, attend the event on behalf of the organization, and to report on the event to the Board of Directors upon the completion of the event. The representative is responsible for ensuring that Wikimedia DC is well-represented at the event, to ensure that Wikimedia DC can carry out its objectives at the event, and that the program is consistent with Wikimedia goals and values. This is not a formal job position; this responsibility can be conferred onto any person or persons attending the event who can be trusted to report on the event and represent the organization.

Before the Event—The President, upon approving the event, should either approach the contact at the partnering institution or designate someone to do so on his or her behalf. The purpose of contact is to get a sense of logistical needs, evaluate what level of support Wikimedia DC will need to provide (including financial support as well as expertise), and determine how the event aligns with Wikimedia DC's goals (including the recruitment of members, the contribution of media for Wikimedia projects, or a valuable ally in the chapter's region). For instance, if we were to hold a scanathon at an institution with a Wikipedian in Residence, we would determine whether or not they need to borrow our scanner, that they only need experienced Wikipedians in a supporting and not leading role, and that their partnership helps us expand our reach and add more content to the Wikimedia projects. Each event should be considered an opportunity to meet Wikimedia DC's goals as stated in the Annual Plan. Additional scrutiny is required as the budget for the event increases.

During the Event—Appointed representatives are responsible for representing Wikimedia DC to the attendees and for reporting on the event. The representative should make sure to bring a Wikimedia DC guest book, name tags for attendees to wear, and member registration forms. At the event the representative should keep track of:

  • The number of attendees
  • The number of new members
  • The outcomes of the event
  • Lessons learned
  • Any feedback.

Representatives are expected to be knowledgeable of the Wikimedia projects and of Wikimedia DC.

After the Event—Representatives, upon the conclusion of the event, should prepare a report for the Board of Directors before the next meeting, including the above items. They should also seek feedback from the partner institution and gauge their opinion of the event, as well as determine what opportunities exist for future partnerships.