UK GLAMs: A rare opportunity to fund a Wikipedian in Residence


Wikipedians in Residence at GLAMcamp London by Rock drum. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

This post is written by Sarah Stierch, Wikimedia Foundation Community Fellow and former Wikipedian in Residence at the Smithsonian Institution Archives and Archives of American Art.

Wikimedia UK accepting proposals by GLAMs to fund Wikipedians in Residence projects until January 31, 2013

Wikimedia UK
, a non-profit chapter that supports Wikipedia programs and projects in the United Kingdom, has an amazing opportunity for UK GLAMs: apply to receive a
portion of £15,000 allocated by Wikimedia UK to fund your own Wikipedian in Residence through January 31, 2013.

Applications are due November 15. Decisions will be made by November 17.

What is a Wikipedian in Residence (WiR)? It is a Wikipedian who works with your
GLAM to share and open your content to the world through Wikipedia and related Wikimedia projects. Residents are often located in the area of your GLAM,
working at the institution for a set time period, or may be work remotely. GLAMs that have hosted WiR’s include the British Library, British Museum,
National Archives of the United States, Smithsonian Institution, and the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.

You might be asking yourself: what can my GLAM do with a WiR in a two month time period? A lot. Projects and programs can include:

  • Institutional awareness: WiR’s can present to and educate staff and volunteers about how to contribute to Wikipedia properly. Wikipedia is known
    for it’s complex set of policies and procedures. If staff and volunteers are more aware of how to weave through these policies and edit ethically,
    then they’ll be more prone to contributing their knowledge. Example: Archives of American Art
  • Share collection data: Join the ranks of institutions such as the Walters Art Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, Château de Versailles, and the
    Australian Broadcasting Company, and share media and metadata with the world. By releasing media and metadata under free licenses, Wikipedia will
    be able to showcase your collections on it’s articles and hackers will be able to create cool projects using your data. Example:

    The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
  • Host events: WiR’s can plan and promote events at your GLAM to bring Wikipedians and volunteers from around the world together – in person and
    online – to improve content related to your organization’s holdings on Wikipedia in over 240 languages. Edit-a-thons and backstage pass events not
    only bring Wikipedians together with staff for a fun and educational experience, but, they truly do make an impact. Example: Ada Lovelace Day at the Royal Society.
  • Create a multilingual experience for your visitors: QRpedia is a unique way to share
    Wikipedia content about your collection. QRpedia uses QR code technology. When a visitor to your GLAM scans the QR code that is displayed near an
    object, QRpedia reads the language setting for that visitors phone, and displays the Wikipedia article about the object or subject in the visitors
    language. This innovative technology has been used by Joan Miró Foundation, the National Archives UK, and the town of Monmouth to celebrate their
    heritage. Example: Derby Museum

Within two months, and a little funding, GLAM-wiki magic can happen and the value of Wikipedia
partnerships can be discovered by your institution. Now is your chance to give it a try – and help share your institution’s holdings with the world’s
largest free encyclopedia and join the ranks of OpenGLAM.

Applications are due November 15 at 5 pm. Apply here.