Strategic Plan for Fiscal Years 2016–17 to 2020–21

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This plan documents Wikimedia District of Columbia's strategic priorities and objectives for the five-year period starting October 1, 2016 and ending September 30, 2021.

Mission

Wikimedia DC's mission is the advancement of general knowledge, the collection and development of educational content under a free license or in the public domain, and the effective sharing and dissemination of such content globally. As an official Wikimedia chapter, we support the goals of the Wikimedia Foundation, including the work of volunteers on Wikipedia, other Wikimedia projects, and other free knowledge initiatives.

We support the advancement of general knowledge. Wikimedia DC exists as part of an international movement of organizations and volunteers that aims to increase the world's knowledge. This work takes place in two parts: the development of content and its dissemination. Central to our mission of advancing general knowledge is the concept that knowledge curation and sharing must be powered in a decentralized way and not mainly on top-down mandates. This approach is scalable and provides a service that can benefit all people, including groups that are marginalized or excluded by other modes of knowledge-sharing.

We support the development of educational content under a free license or under the public domain. Wikimedia DC collaborates with other organizations and individuals that share our mission of advancing general knowledge. Our outreach work seeks to improve the content on the Wikimedia projects by recruiting knowledgeable volunteers and making existing collections of knowledge available to the Wikimedia projects. We supplement online organizing efforts with offline relationship-building and volunteer training. The ability to volunteer for our cause is limited by barriers to participation, and we seek to lower these barriers as much as possible. "General knowledge" includes knowledge written by, and about, marginalized groups and subject matters, and building an inclusive organization is necessary for us to accomplish our goals. Our content is available for reuse by others.

We support the dissemination of educational content effectively and globally. Wikimedia is a top-ten web property, read by people around the world in nearly 300 languages. Wikimedia DC activities support the Wikimedia projects so that they may achieve their potential through the development of technology that facilitates the production and discovery of knowledge. We support free expression, a free and open Internet, and the use of open licenses and the protection of the public domain.

Strategic Priorities

Participation

The first Wikimedia DC strategic priority area is participation. The cornerstone of the Wikimedia movement and vision is the concept of collaborative and participatory knowledge-building. Enabling individuals and groups with different backgrounds and skillsets to constructively participate in the work of the Wikimedia projects is vital to the continued success of our movement.

To guide our strategic direction over the next five years, Wikimedia DC has identified two specific strategic priorities within the participation area:

Diversity

The second Wikimedia DC strategic priority area is diversity. The Wikimedia movement has historically struggled with diversity issues, both with regard to empowering and supporting participation by members of marginalized or under-represented groups, and developing content on under-represented or marginalized topics in a variety of languages. Wikimedia DC has become a leading voice for diversity within the movement, and we aim to continue and expand our work in this area.

To guide our strategic direction over the next five years, Wikimedia DC has identified two specific strategic priorities within the diversity area:

Programs

Wikimedia DC programs can be categorized into five principal program areas, each of which encompasses a range of programs that share similar goals or methodologies.

Institutional Partnership

The institutional partnership program area consists of programs whose principal objective is to leverage the resources, holdings, and expertise of institutions in the cultural, academic, government, professional, and non-governmental sectors to improve the Wikimedia projects and other free knowledge repositories. Institutional partnership programs can take many forms, including the following representative program types:

  • Collaborative editing events, popularly known as "edit-a-thons", which are held in collaboration with one or more partner institutions. These events aim to train the partner institutions' staff to contribute to the Wikimedia projects, while simultaneously enabling Wikimedia volunteers to leverage the partner institutions' resources in their own contributions.
  • Mass content donations, where a partner institution directly contributes some or all of its digitized holdings (which may include text, imagery, or data) to one or more Wikimedia projects.
  • Wikipedians-in-Residence, which are dedicated volunteers or staff employed by a partner institution for the purpose of collaborating with the Wikimedia movement and facilitating contributions to the Wikimedia projects.

Wikimedia DC will utilize a combination of these established program types, as well as others that may be developed over the course of the next five years, to achieve our objectives within the institutional partnership program area.

Measures of success

To evaluate the effectiveness of our institutional partnership programs, Wikimedia DC has set strategic objectives that leverage quantitative measures of the programs' breadth, depth, and impact to determine program success.

Breadth Wikimedia DC measures the breadth of our institutional partnership programs using metrics such as the total number of partners engaged, and the numbers of partners in particular sectors or institutional categories. These metrics can be used to evaluate the success of the programs with the following objectives:
Depth Wikimedia DC measures the depth of our institutional partnership programs using our institutional partnership scale, which provides a quantitative ranking that represents a partner institution's level of engagement with the Wikimedia movement. This metric will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:
Impact Wikimedia DC measures the impact of our institutional partnership programs using the standard set of metrics identified by the Wikimedia foundation, including the quantity of articles improved through the program and the total volume of content contributed by program participants. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:

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 can take many forms, including the following representative program types:

  • Contests, including both editing and photography contests, which aim to motivate volunteers to provide outstanding contributions by fostering a healthy spirit of competition as well as offering tangible prizes.
  • Expert interviews, where external subject-matter experts provide in-depth reviews of specific Wikimedia project content. These reviews can then be used to direct dedicated content improvement efforts.
  • Wikipedia Fellowships, which are dedicated academic or quasi-academic positions providing resources and financial support to individuals who improve specific content on the Wikimedia projects.

Wikimedia DC will offer programs of these established types, and may develop others over of the next five years, to achieve our objectives in the content development program area.

Measures of success

To evaluate the effectiveness of our content development programs, Wikimedia DC has defined a set of strategic objectives that leverage quantitative measures of the programs' breadth and impact to determine program success.

Breadth Wikimedia DC measures the breadth of our content development programs using metrics such as the total number of individual participants. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:
Impact Wikimedia DC measures the impact of our content development programs using the standard set of metrics identified by the Wikimedia foundation, including the quantity of articles improved through the program and the total volume of content contributed by program participants, as well as secondary content quality improvement metrics collected from article quality assessment ratings and formal review processes on the Wikimedia projects. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:

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. Training and support programs can take many forms, including the following representative program types:

  • Training workshops, where new or established Wikimedia volunteers are provided with training that enhances relevant skills and empowers them to contribute in new ways.
  • Training material development, where online or offline training materials, which may range from simple training guides to interactive online courses, are made available to interested volunteers across the Wikimedia movement.
  • Mentorships, where individual Wikimedia volunteers receive training and guidance from one or more dedicated highly-experienced volunteers.

Wikimedia DC will utilize a combination of these established program types, as well as others that may be developed over the course of the next five years, to achieve our objectives within the training and support program area.

Measures of success

To evaluate the effectiveness of our training and support programs, Wikimedia DC has defined a set of strategic objectives that leverage quantitative measures of the programs' breadth and impact to determine program success.

Breadth Wikimedia DC measures the breadth of our training and support programs using metrics such as the total number of individual participants. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:
Impact Wikimedia DC measures the impact of our training and support programs using a combination of qualitative and quantitative feedback from program participants. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:

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. Grantmaking and sponsorship programs can take many forms, including the following representative program types:

  • Cash grants, where Wikimedia DC provides cash grants to individuals or groups undertaking projects that support the Wikimedia movement.
  • Resource grants, where Wikimedia DC provides non-cash resources, such as publications or technology resources, to individuals or groups undertaking projects that support the Wikimedia movement.
  • Fiscal sponsorships, where Wikimedia DC acts as a financial administrator or custodian for grants by Wikimedia Foundation or third-parties to eligible groups or organizations.

Wikimedia DC will utilize a combination of these established program types, as well as others that may be developed over the course of the next five years, to achieve our objectives within the grantmaking and sponsorship program area.

Measures of success

To evaluate the effectiveness of our grantmaking and sponsorship programs, Wikimedia DC has defined a set of strategic objectives that leverage quantitative measures of the programs' breadth to determine program success.

Breadth Wikimedia DC measures the breadth of our grantmaking and sponsorship programs using metrics such as the total number of grantees, the total amount of grant funding disbursed, and the numbers of grantees and amount of grant funding disbursed in specific grant categories. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives:

Public Policy

The public policy program area includes programs whose principal objective is to advocating regulatory and legislative changes that benefit the Wikimedia projects and the broader free knowledge movement. Public policy programs can take many forms, including the following representative program types:

  • Public seminars, which aim to educate stakeholders and members of the public regarding regulatory and legislative issues that affect Wikimedia projects and the broader free knowledge movement.
  • Position papers, including formal comments to government agencies and amicus briefs, which aim to present Wikimedia DC positions on regulatory and legislative issues to the public.
  • Direct and indirect lobbying, which aims to directly influence pending legislation at the federal, state, or local level.

Wikimedia DC may develop other programs over the course of the next five years to achieve our objectives within the public policy program area.

Measures of success

To evaluate the effectiveness of our public policy programs, Wikimedia DC has defined a set of strategic objectives that leverage quantitative measures of the programs' breadth, depth, and impact to determine program success.

Breadth Wikimedia DC measures the breadth of our public policy programs using metrics such as the size of the audience reached. These metrics will be used to evaluate the success of the programs against the following specific objectives: