Submissions/Introducing the Wiki Entrepreneur

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After careful consideration, the Programme Committee has decided not to accept the below submission at this time. Thank you to the author(s) for participating in the Wikimania 2014 programme submission, we hope to still see you at Wikimania this August.

This submission is on the wait list for Wikimania 2014.


Submission no. 2022
Title of the submission
Introducing the Wiki Entrepreneur
Type of submission (discussion, hot seat, panel, presentation, tutorial, workshop)
Author of the submission
Isla Haddow-Flood
E-mail address
Islahaddow, Michaelphoya, Abel Asrat
Country of origin
South Africa, Malawi, Ethiopia
Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (at least 300 words to describe your proposal)

The intrepid GLAM volunteers across America and Europe have created a niche focus of work on Wikipedia, revealing a fascinating and achievable opportunity for any memory, arts and heritage institution anywhere in the world. In 2012, the Share Your Knowledge project took the GLAM work further by setting a target of 30,000 contributions of African content to Wikipedia, and exceeded it by a few thousand. The same project contributed content from within Africa and worked to a point, but could not go further. The challenges were many, the solutions difficult to achieve using conventional models. An entirely sustainable, completely new solution had to be found. It took a while, and many brainstorming sessions, but finally there was a glimmer of light ... the solution was the successful transformation of a social entrepreneur into a Wikipedian in Residence that harnessed the best of both worlds.

The Wiki Entrepreneur project was launched in January 2014. It uses the tech-inspired freemium strategy to drive a self-sustaining model that encourages the custodians of archives that reside in institutions across Africa to work with Wikipedia. Currently in its pilot phase, the Wiki Entrepreneur project has trained two culture-inclined entrepreneurs - Michael in Malawi, Abel in Ethiopia - in the open movement and all things Wiki to ensure they have the skills to activate and sustain on-going consultation with institutions in their country. The Wiki Entrepreneurs facilitate the ongoing donation of digitised materials from cultural, heritage and media institutions in each country to Wikipedia and, at the same time, they advocate for and support the Open Movement, as well as train and build a sustainable and supported group of Wikipedians in that country.

The project is designed to be sustainable, repeatable and adaptable. It is therefore vital that the team should introduce the concept and the need for the project to the greater GLAM community, as well as provide its very first outcomes, successes, challenges and initial case studies of project partners and Wikipedia events in each country.

The Wiki Entrepreneur project is part of a group of initiatives aimed at Activating Africa via different means. These include the #OpenAfrica14 Course and Open Movement ToolKit, as well as Kumusha Takes Wiki (a community up contribution project based in Uganda and Côte d’Ivoire), a Kumusha Bus (an African adaption of the Libre Bus) and Wiki Loves Africa (a photographic contest on the African continent, that will feed themed content to Wikimedia Commons).


GLAM Outreach (although it could also work in Legal & Free Culture or WikiCulture & Community)

Length of session (if other than 30 minutes, specify how long)
20 minutes
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)
Special requests

Please ensure that, if accepted, this submission goes either a day or a session after the presentation on Africa, the Continent that Anyone can Edit.

Interested attendees

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  1. Abel Asrat (talk)
  2. Michaelphoya (talk) 21:40, 31 March 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Blue Rasberry (talk) 22:11, 7 April 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. Ocaasi (talk) 23:29, 7 April 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Djembayz (talk) 11:59, 18 April 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  6. Enock4seth (talk) 11:16, 23 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  7. Your name here