Dear friends and colleagues,
Rod Dunican (currently the Director, Wikipedia Education Program at WMF)
has announced that he is leaving the Foundation at the end of this month.
We are truly sorry to see him go; he has been such a critical part of the
Wikipedia Education Program and strategy for many years including his
leadership of the team. We wish you the very best, Rod, and look forward to
hearing of your new adventures.
I am looking forward to working even more closely with the current
Education team: Anna Koval, Floor Koudijs and Tighe Flanagan. All three of
them have complementing skills and backgrounds, and have begun working
closely and effectively with each other and with the rest of the
Grantmaking team. With Rod, they have been working on an exciting shift in
strategy as they have moved from a more hands-on programmatic strategy to
becoming a facilitative hub in which the team supports different kinds of
local education programs. This has meant that the team has been working
with educational program leaders, volunteers and community organisers in
over 60 countries to map their education-related activities, successes and
challenges. The integration of the Wikipedia Education Program team into
the GLEE team also means valuable opportunities for the different grants
programs to work more closely to understand successful education programs
and to support them through grants and other resources. In particular, the
Education team’s focus on gender and geographic diversity as a strategy is
very much shared across the broader Grantmaking department.
As the team goes forward to develop a road map for the future with our
community members, Floor Koudijs will be the interim Senior Manager for the
Education Program. Initially the team has been assigned different parts of
the world in order to create a baseline of educational programs and
activities, with Floor responsible for Latin America and Western Europe,
Tighe for the Arab region and Africa, and Anna for Asia and Eastern Europe.
Please look at the Education portal for more details.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, or to Floor, Tighe and Anna, for
any comments or clarifications. We look forward to working in
partnership with our communities worldwide as we support education programs
in service to the Wikimedia mission.
 Floor: fkoudijs(a)wikimedia.org Tighe: tflanagan(a)wikimedia.org Anna:
*Anasuya SenguptaSenior Director of GrantmakingWikimedia Foundation*
Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in
the sum of all knowledge. Help us make it a reality!
Support Wikimedia <https://donate.wikimedia.org/>
Wikimedia Nederland published its report on activities in May:
It is included in this message as plain text.
*COMMUNITY: supporting and mobilising volunteers and editors]*
The WMNL office was open for community members on May 10 and May 24. In
total, 12 people came to the office to discuss (inter alia) the education
programme, projectmonitoring and reporting.
· *Wikidata - DBPedia cooperation*
The working group on Wikidata and DBPedia cooperation met at the WMNL
offices on May 15.
*WORK: content, collaboration and activity development*
· *Wiki Loves Earth events*
The Wiki Loves Earth kick off took place in De Weerribben-Wieden National
Park on May 3. After a presentation a group of participants went into the
national park by boat with a ranger (from Staatsbosbeheer to take pictures
of this park.
On May 25, a further three Wiki Loves Earth events took place: in Sallandse
Heuvelrug National Park a sound workshop was organized to record sounds of
nature. In Utrechtse Heuvelrug National Park and Drentsche Aa National
Landscape photo workshops were organized.
· *Editathon Women and Art, Amsterdam*
On 17 May, a group of Wikipedians held a new edit-a-thon about women and
art at De Appel art centre in Amsterdam. This event was a follow-up to the
first Dutch Art+Feminism edit-a-thon on February 1 and was also financially
supported by Wikimedia NL. Both events together have, so far, resulted in
more than 50 new or improved articles about women in the arts.
· *Education Programme*
The two consultants engaged to carry out a feasibility study on developing
a WMNL education programme presented their interim results during the
Wiki-Saturday on May 24 . This was followed by a brainstorming session on
aims and ambitions of the programme
· *Maps and Wikipedia meeting, Amsterdam*
Wikipedians in Residence Sandra Fauconnier and Hay Kranen have organized an
expert meeting on old maps and Wikimedia projects on Saturday 24 May in
Amsterdam. More than 20 participants, including curators / collection
managers of map collections, and Dutch Wikipedians listened to the keynote
presentation was by Susanna Ånäs (Wikimedia Finland) on the WikiMaps
project. Further presentations, and a brainstorm session, included
historical map collections from Koninklijke Bibliotheek, old maps on
Wikimedia Commons, and a case study of storytelling via maps: visualizing
the 1934 world trip of Felix Vening Meinesz, a project by TU Delft.
· *Presentation Libraries Zeeland*
Sebastiaan ter Burg gave a presentation about cooperation between external
wiki initiatives and Wikimedia projects at the Zeeuwse Bibliotheek
(libraries in Zeeland) and met with the library of Vlissingen for future
· *World War Two*
Board member Justus de Bruijn and director Sandra Rientjes visited NIOD
(the national institute for war, conflict and genocide studies) to explore
cooperation concerning the the topic of World War Two. NIOD is keen to make
their collections better accessible to the public.
· *Bonnefanten Museum*
We met with the Maastricht Bonnefanten Museum to explore cooperation.
The newsletter was published on May 22. At the moment, 814 people receive
the WMNL newsletter.
· *Zurich Hackathon*
Three members of the community attended the Hackathon in Zurich, supported
through a WMNL scholarship.
We started advertising our scholarships for Wikimania. The aim is to give
scholarships to ten members of the community.
The WMNL Board met on May 8.
Directeur/Executive Director Wikimedia Nederland
tel. (+31) (0)30 3200238
mob. (+31) (0)6 31786379
*Postadres*: * Bezoekadres:*
Postbus 167 Mariaplaats 3
3500 AD Utrecht Utrecht
For those who have not seen it yet, on June 13th the third installment in a
series of regular blog posts by the members of the Wikimedia Foundation
Board of Trustees was posted on the Wikimedia blog. This month’s post was
written by Board member Bishakha Datta on the topic of leadership within
the complex structures of the Wikimedia Foundation. The post is available
Through Thick And Thin
Posted by Bishakha Datta on June 13, 2014
*This post is part of an ongoing series of monthly blog posts by members of
the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees that aims to shed light on the
function, responsibilities and inner workings of the Board.*
I’ve often thought you need the thin skin of an amphibian and the thick
hide of a rhinoceros to be a trustee of the Wikimedia Foundation. Your skin
must be thin enough to allow different ideas, voices, thoughts and
perspectives to permeate, including those most distant or different from
your own – openness is an inherent aspect of leadership. At the same time,
it must be thick enough to weed out distractions and inessentials. And of
course, your mind must be capable of knowing the difference.
What makes leadership complex in Wikimedia is its vast, diverse and
decentralized nature. Like the movement itself, the 10 of us on the
Wikimedia Foundation board come from different cultures, continents,
backgrounds and experiences – all of which shape how we understand power
and leadership. And all of which determine, to some extent, the kinds of
leaders we aspire to be or will become.
Let’s dive a bit deeper into this. In companies or corporations where the
notion of hierarchy is accepted, power can flow directly up or down in a
straight line. In academics, the teacher-learner dynamic provides cues for
the exercise of power and leadership. In the women’s rights movement, which
is part of my background, power is a dirty word and erasing power
inequalities between genders is an explicit goal. Thus leadership here
cannot be overt or heavy-handed; it has to be subtle and implicit, more
circular and collective, sometimes even veiled. In the sex workers’ rights
movement, of which I am a long-time ally, we turn power on its head and
equip unlettered sex workers or the ‘powerless’ to become leaders. This
requires supportive ‘outsiders’ to consciously step back and transfer some
of their own skills and power to ‘insiders’.
As WMF trustees, we exercise leadership through a mix of methods, from the
invisible to the visible, the implicit to the explicit and the subtle to
the evident. One of our most commonplace, yet most profound, acts of
leadership is upholding shared values and principles, an everyday act that
we take almost for granted. Let’s take consensus, which is a movement-wide
principle.  On the WMF board, we regularly strive for consensus in our
decision-making, while understanding that consensus is not unanimity. This
is done through certain routinely followed processes. For example, at our
board meetings, virtual or physical, each trustee is given a chance to
speak on each agenda item. This may sound basic, but this is essential to
give everyone a voice. This round-robin technique ensures that newer
trustees are not hesitant to speak, brings diverse views to the table,
prevents any one trustee or viewpoint from dominating the discussion, or
the formation of cliques or lobbies advocating a particular perspective.
And it ensures we don’t get entrenched in our individual positions – as
long as we are honest enough to admit we may not have all the answers in
our heads. And open enough to changing our minds in the face of better
evidence, arguments and insights.
And as each trustee voices his or her thoughts, never repeating what has
already been said, but plus-oneing, adding, sifting, sorting, shading,
unconsidered points and nuances appear on the table, the conversation
starts to round out – and commonalities, or the building blocks of
consensus, start to emerge. I find this process almost magical – and
Wikipedian in the sense that our collective decisions are built through our
individual contributions that we share with one another, just like our
Another way we exercise leadership is by using our influence, but this is
done sparingly, modestly and in a peer-to-peer manner that fosters equality
in keeping with our values. An encouraging nod, supportive email or helping
hand where it can make a difference, a candid behind-the-scenes
conversation when it’s called for, sometimes calling a spade a spade, or a
banana a banana rather than an elongated yellow fruit. There is
satisfaction at having done the right thing, even though no one may be
there to witness it.
Leadership is often misunderstood only as flaunting one’s power, but it is
as much about recognizing and accepting the impact, and the limits of
power. As WMF trustees, we entrust the Executive Director to make or
implement certain decisions; that is what delegation of power is all about.
In theory, delegating power is easy, like building consensus. In practice,
it means exercising a different kind of leadership, one which knows how and
when to step back just as much as it knows when and how to step forward.
You have to keep moving between the spotlight and the shadows to be an
In this sense, good leadership also means allowing others to lead and
creating the space and conditions to do so; as Board liaisons or observers
to Board-created committees such as the Affiliations Committee or the Funds
Dissemination Committee we must constantly ensure that our presence
encourages accountability but does not prevent others from exercising their
leadership. At the same time, we must know when to step in and provide
needed guidance or suggest improvements. Ask tough questions when they must
be asked. And explain Board decisions that may not be popular but that we,
as trustees, consider meaningful for the movement.
All in all, leadership is a balancing act, a bit like walking on a
tightrope. Lean too far ahead and you’re too much of a leader. Lean too far
back and you’re not enough of a leader. How can one command leadership
while continually deconstructing hierarchies of power? How can one
challenge thinking that has fossilized and inspire others to think in
different ways? How can one bring one’s personal experiences and influences
to the boardroom while putting aside one’s personal agendas? How can one
have skin that is both thick and thin? How can one see the trees without
missing the woods – or the big picture – in the same gaze? And finally, how
can we think not just of the needs of today, but also those of tomorrow?
As trustees the ultimate challenge before us is to be many-splendoured
things, as per this Buddhist model of leadership: sometimes “visionary (or
mission-driven, mission above all else, including constituent interests and
noise),” sometimes “role model (exemplary figure, does what he says,
someone who can be respected and emulated, lead by example),” sometimes
balanced “(impartiality in judgement rather than resolving conflict),”
sometimes “manager (ability to delegate),” sometimes “protector (of the
movement, wellbeing of the community),” sometimes “showing the way (inspire
others to their full potential).”  Or as one 11-year-old girl simplified
it to her mother: “Leadership is helping others, particularly through
difficult times. They need to show that this is the way you could go for
your future.”  I’ll plus one her on that.
*Bishakha Datta (User:Bishdatta) has been serving on the WMF Board of
Trustees since 2010. *￼
+1.415.839.6885 ext 6881
We have published the minutes from the Board's April 2014 meeting in San
Francisco, which you may find here:
*NOTICE: As an attorney for the Wikimedia Foundation, for legal and ethical
reasons, I cannot give legal advice to, or serve as a lawyer for, community
members, volunteers, or staff members in their personal capacity. For more
on what this means, please see our legal disclaimer
Below you will find the report of activities of the month of May 2014 done
by the volunteers of Wikimedia Mexico. Please don't hesitate to get in
touch with us if you require extra information about this activities or
only to make some suggestions.
The report is also available on Spanish and English in our wiki:
Kindly regards. On behalf our chapter.
Carmen Alcázar (User:Wotancito)
===First meeting of volunteers for Wikimania 2015===
The Mexican chapter had its first meeting of volunteers for Wikimania 2015,
the Wikimedia movement international conference which is to be held next
year at Vasconcelos Library in Mexico City. The meeting was held at the
same place where the conference will take place. 32 persons attended. A
general presentation was offered, then the general coordinations and their
specific tasks were described.
===Wikimania 2015 announcement on the Internet Day===
Past May 16
, president of Wikimedia Mexico, was invited by the Laboratory for the City
of Mexico to preside over the Internet Day in Mexico City. The ceremony
took place after an inauguration of a Telmex Digital Classroom at the
Centro de Transferencia a Menores of Procuraduría General de la República
(Center for Minor Transfer of the Attorney General's Office of Mexico
City). By request of the city authorities,
made a speech focused on social participation and collaborative phenomenon
behind Wikipedia. This message was written by Salvador
. The mayor of Mexico City, Miguel Ángel Mancera, formally announced the
realization of Wikimania 2015 in Mexico City and expressed his approval.
Watch the video
== Journal ==
about Wikipedia at two self-managed public high schools in Chicoloapan,
State of Mexico: high school number 55 and high school "Próceres de la
http://linuxchicoloapan.org/flisol-2014-en-chicoloapan-resena/ here, a
brief review by Adrián Vergara, a local chronicler who assisted us; some
images and opinions of some of the students are also included. These talks
are some of the activities included in the Latin-American Festival for the
Installation of Free Software (FLISOL).
Interview for Wikinoticias and presentation of Wikimania before the head of
the Government of the Federal District, Miguel Ángel Mancera.
attended the Government's office.
meets the authorities of the Institute of High School Education of the
Government of Mexico City in Iztacalco to talk about their interest in
joining Wikimedia México's Wikipedia Education Program.
*Wikimania 2015 staff work meeting at Jardín de Innovación, Mexico City.
meets the authorities of the Laboratorio para la Ciudad (Lab for the City)
of the Government of the Federal District to talk about Wikimania 2015.
*Wikimania 2015 staff meets Biblioteca Vasconcelos' staff.
participates in the ceremony to celebrate the Internet Day in Mexico City,
invited by Laboratorio para la Ciudad of the Government of the Federal
talks during the Latin-American Festival for the Installation of Free
Software (FLISOL) at National Polytechnic Institute's Escuela Superior de
Cómputo (ESCOM, School of Computer Science).
*Wikimedia México's board's monthly meeting
*Wikimania 2015 staff work meeting
*First meeting of volunteers for Wikimania 2015. Vasconcelos Library,
*Presentation of the Report of Semester 2013-2 of the Wikipedia Education
Program at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM)'s Faculty of
Higher Studies Aragón (FES Aragón).
at the Second Meeting of Digital Humanities, organized by Red de
Humanidades Digitales (Digital Humanities Network), UNAM's Faculty of
Philosophy and Literature (FFyL) and Biblioteca Vasconcelos.
at Cumbre del Buen Conocer (Well Knowing Summit) in Quito, Ecuador,
organized by FLOK Society.
*Wikipedia Monthly Workshop at Telmex Hub.
*Meetings and activities related to Wikimania 2015.