Annual Plan for Fiscal Year 2020–21

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This plan covers Wikimedia DC's planned program activities and operations for the 2020–21 fiscal year, which begins on October 1, 2020 and ends on September 30, 2021.


The Wikimedia DC program portfolio for the 2020–21 fiscal year consists of two key program areas:

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.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant adverse impact on our institutional partnership programs, which have traditionally focused on in-person edit-a-thons, training workshops, and other events as the primary mechanism for engaging new partners. We have reoriented our institutional partnership methodology around virtual participation and engagement, and have successfully collaborated with multiple key partners to host virtual events. We anticipate that we will continue to run events in an entirely virtual way for a substantial portion of the coming fiscal year.

Over the course of the 2020–21 fiscal year, we will collaborate with at least 20 institutional partners; while we expect that this collaboration will largely take the form of virtual events similar to those held during the second half of the past fiscal year, we will continue to explore, develop, and adapt new mechanisms of virtual engagement to further enhance our institutional partnership program portfolio. As we continue to engage with both new and existing partners, we will ensure that at least 50% of our partnership activities address diversity in some form, including diversity of content and diversity of participation.

Leadership Development and Support

The leadership development and support program area includes programs whose principal objectives consist of providing professional development opportunities, financial and administrative support, and non-financial resources to established and emerging program leaders across the Wikimedia movement.

In prior fiscal years, we have supported volunteer training and development for high-performing Wikimedia movement contributors through the leadership boot camp model; this model has resulted in significant program impact as well as a steady flow of new leadership into Wikimedia activities. We will explore the possibility of holding another leadership boot camp during the latter half of the 2020–21 fiscal year; specific plans will depend on the situation with respect to the COVID-19 pandemic. The target audience of the boot camp would 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.

Public Policy

The public policy program area includes efforts whose principal objective is to encourage regulatory and legislative changes that will benefit Wikimedia projects and the broader free knowledge and culture movement. During the 2020–21 fiscal year, we will continue exploring public policy engagement across issues related to copyright, mass digitization, intellectual property reforms, the public domain, and online safety and privacy. To the extent possible, we will coordinate with and support the Wikimedia Foundation's public policy department, other chapters, user groups, and other like-minded organizations.

Organizational Development

During the coming fiscal year, we will continue to explore new fundraising directions, with a focus on external, non-Wikimedia grant funding. We have occasionally engaged with external grantmakers, such as the Knight Foundation, but we have not done so systematically. In order to develop a broader funding base as well as organizational fundraising expertise, we will work to identify and apply for external grants to support our planned programs or potential new ones. We will continue to engage with other Wikimedia organizations, informal groups, and program leaders from around the United States to explore innovative new ways of sharing resources, including staff, funding, and technology, across organizational boundaries.

The COVID-19 pandemic has severely limited our ability to engage with our membership and the local volunteer community through social events. To remedy this, we will explore new ideas for informal virtual engagement, such as hosting virtual office hours, with the aim of engaging with our members and the broader local volunteer and partner community, recruiting new members, and empowering informal mechanisms for exchanging new ideas and feedback regarding our activities.