Annual Report 2021/Story: Investigating what the Wikimedia movement is wishing for regarding partnerships

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In this Story we focus on the work done to investigate how the Wikimedia affiliates are working with content partners, what they want to do more of, where their issues are and what they would like to support with, or coordinate around. Content partnerships is an area where many affiliates have experiences and see a need for more exchange and to co-develop a common vision.

The needs assessments aim to identify the areas and the competence we already have and see how we can help each other more to utilize this knowledge. We need to better understand the needs of the Wikimedia movement when it comes to partnerships. To find out these needs, we need to compile knowledge from issues about how we work with institutions in the cultural sector in different regions.

The interviews are an open conversation and the questions start with “what and how” in the current partnership situation, to later move on to the needs and we want in the future. An important part is that we try to identify new collaborations within the Wikimedia movement and to make the work more global across borders. We also see this as an introduction and development to the thematic hubs and the opportunities connected to it.

We have had discussions and interviews with people from nearly 40 affiliates and sorted the answers in themes that are based on needs and how support could look like.

We have also documented interviews with video to be able to follow longer reasoning. During discussions, ideas and suggestions can emerge from experiences. These reasonings can be more qualitative than quantitative, which is also valuable to include in the conclusions. The discussions can be a starting point for building a network and working groups that can support delimited thematic areas in the existing structure.

One need that is requested is to have a network of people around you with different skills. Work on the platforms works like many other industries that the network grows during the years you are active in the business. What may differ slightly is that we are located over larger areas and there are many channels that are possible to follow. There is a need to be able to navigate among knowledge and information and find faster ways to get a network.

Something that also is important in a longer view, but there is the dissemination and marketing of work and results. By receiving confirmation in several different places, in different channels and from different actors, it can create knowledge about the benefit that arises through free knowledge. This facilitates the continuation and creation of new projects.

We are working with a Summary section of discussions and interviews. Next step is to analyze the result and start to prototype some tests for different solutions. This work must be done in close cooperation with the respondents since we are working towards the same vision.

This work is also material for a report that will be used for further external discussion on what is possible to implement during 2022. The work process will now have more prototyping, testing, analyzing and refining within the community. One practical way is to define areas for development and start working groups with more defined goals.