Art+Feminism User Group/Planning/AnnualPlan2020-2021

Introduction edit

This plan explains the progress to date for the Art+Feminism initiative and outlines our main programmatic priorities and objectives for 2020-2021.

Overview edit

As indicated in our mid-point report the 2019-2020 grant cycle is one we have dedicated to institution building. Art+Feminism's growth, in terms of both editing output and community-building, has been astronomical since our inception in 2014.

Since 2014, over 18,000 people at 1,260 events around the world have participated in our edit-a-thons, resulting in the creation and improvement of nearly 84,000 articles and items on Wikipedia, Wikidata and Wikicommons.

We brought on new Regional Organizers this year to help cover our existing nodes, strongly believing that local organizers know their communities best. Illustrating this, we created new Regional Organizers domestically in the US in New England, the Mid-Atlantic, and the South to more accurately cover our existing organizers. We certainly have more room to grow.

As the two remaining co-founders step down from organizing roles, in 2020-2021 the leadership team will consist of Kira Wisniewski (Baltimore, MD, United States); Program Manager, Nina Yeboah (Stone Mountain, GA, United States); and Lead Co-Organizers, Mohammed Sadat Abdulai (Accra, Ghana/Berlin, Germany), Amber Berson (Montréal, QC, Canada), and Melissa Tamani (Lima, Peru).

At the beginning of each campaign cycle, we do a forecast of what to expect in the coming year in terms of growth that is based on previous metrics data. In creating our growth model, we use a polynomial trendline to predict the number of events, the number of participants, and the number of articles created or improved. While there are risks involved in relying on past data and methods that cannot include certain variables like the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, our model allows us to make informed guesses about our projected numbers during planning.


  • We will continue to grow our reach in communities of marginalized people and abroad.
  • Consistently, we run the largest Wikipedia edit-a-thon.
  • Our work has welcomed new editors and organizers into the Wikipedia community and empowered them to collaborate with one another.
  • Inspired the founding of other projects, like AfroCROWD which stands as one of our community partners.

Improving quality

  • Participants at our events have created or improved 84,000 articles and items on Wikipedia, Wikidata and Wikicommons in the past seven years - in key areas of the gender gap.
  • Diversity Review and UX/UI Review can serve as models for all Wikipedia initiatives that aim to be more inclusive, thus improving the scope and reach of Wikipedia

Activities edit

In 2020, we had events in 6 continents, in 27 countries and 20 languages. In light of the global pandemic of COVID-19, some of our scheduled events were able to pivot to virtual space, exhibiting a remarkable adaptability by various Art+Feminism edit-a-thons organizers. Thanks to this, successful virtual events were held in Armenia, Brazil, Poland, across the US and more. Unfortunately not all organizers were able to shift to in-person to virtual events and their planned activities were ultimately canceled. As we prepare for our 2020-2021 campaign, “business as usual” is not effective or appropriate as we continue to be in a global pandemic simultaneously with a civil rights movement. It’s been reported that in a recent study, the majority of people will not feel comfortable returning to museums until a vaccine for COVID-19 is widely available. The pandemic is allowing us to focus internally and be less number driven. We want to work on intentional care and deepen our relationships within our community.

Annual Campaign edit

Over the past seven years, Art+Feminism has experienced steady growth with our annual campaign. Excluding the impacts of COVID-19 and organizational changes on our most recent campaign, A+F has had increased participation and expanded our global reach on an annual basis. In 2020-2021, we are utilizing some of the qualitative data we’ve collected over the years to better support the A+F community and build stronger, mutually serving relationships. Our goal for this upcoming year is to strengthen internal and external relationships and deepen our impact where we already have a presence. Initiatives like strategic planning, Indigenous community work, small donor cultivation and board development are all key elements in this overall effort of community care.

We will be expanding our training offerings for our Regional Organizers and event organizers during our 2020-2021 campaign, as part of that work of community building. For Regional Organizers, these sessions will offer technical training (e.g., how to use technological tools like Streak to efficiently participate in the A+F workflow, etc.) and community-building (via skill-sharing). For our event organizers, these training sessions will include A+F staples like Intro to Editing Wikipedia along with skill-building opportunities relevant to event organizing and adapted to the virtual landscape.

Additionally, we are further preparing our community for COVID-19’s impact on our ability to gather and edit in person. At the end of our 2019-2020 campaign, we produced the Art+Feminism Collaborative Resources for Virtual Events document. Given the ongoing pandemic, our 2020-2021 campaign will include virtual edit-a-thons directly organized by the A+F leadership team and support to experienced and new edit-a-thon organizers in hosting virtual events.

Event Organizer Testimony edit

We invited organizers on our post-event survey to include external comments specifically for funders and here are a few highlights from that survey.

I am involved in organizing Art+Feminism workshops in Ghana because of the positive impact it has on Wikipedia and it's sister projects. This year's campaign was well promoted. Communication with organizers was superb. Micro grant got disbursed quickly to support my events in Ghana. I had all the support I needed to organize successful events this year. Looking forward to next year already. - Sadik Shahadu, Navrongo, Ghana

I love that we can host the Art + Feminism Wikipedia-Edit-a-Thon each year. For us, it's a relatively small scale program with a huge impact, both in terms of adding underrepresented artists to Wikipedia, and also in empowering our visitors to take the reins to contribute to public knowledge. We also see folks that we don't necessarily reach through more "established" public program formats like talks and tours. -Greg Stuart, Philadelphia, PA

Our first Art + Feminism Edit-a-Thon was a big success. We were inspired to host an event to improve and create articles for the artists in our current exhibition "The Medea Insurrection: Radical Women Artists Behind the Iron Curtain." During the event we made 160 edits on 31 articles, added a total of 133 references, and added 9,630 words! We also worked on translating articles and created 4 new ones in English for these important artists: Angela Hampel, Gundula Schulze Eldowy, Zorka Ságlová, and Doris Ziegler. We're excited to host an edit-a-thon next year and expand the scope of what we edit. - Anna Rose Canzano, Culver City, CA

Hosting an Art + Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon was a great way to bring our community together and bring attention to a very important yet often overlooked issue - the gender gap on Wikipedia. This event also offered volunteers an opportunity to more deeply interact with and encounter some of the phenomenal women artists in our own collection here at the Ulrich. I hope that this Edit-a-thon helps spread awareness about the gender gap on Wikipedia and all of the work that has yet to be done, while providing volunteers with the tools necessary to create real change. -Nellie Elliott, Wichita, Kansas, United States

More than 50 researchers, art workers, professors, and students participated in our marathon, accessing the Zoom app and working really hard in the articles and in understanding how to use the Wiki tools. They were people living in different states and even countries, who understood the consequences this project is capable of articulating on people's educational lives and how it could reverberate in other campaigns within the art world. Helping women to achieve the central role we deserve in books, research processes, exhibition making, the historiography of arts, through the internet became our duty. - NaPupila Team, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

(Testimonies/comments from some of our participants, in Portuguese) - Wiki Editoras Lx, Lisboa, Portugal

“Gostei da sensação de ter dado visibilidade a uma mulher que não constava na Wikipedia e de ter conhecido mulheres muito interessantes e com histórias e objetivos que me inspiraram muito.”
“Gostei muito da maneira como o encontro foi orquestrado, da organização, do conteúdo trazido pelas mentoras e da comida (delícia, obrigada!).”
“Obrigada por tudo, adorei a experiência, adorei aprender a editar a Wikipédia e adorei poder contribuir.”
“Foi uma experiência intensa e poderosa!”
“Obrigada (...), pela generosidade em como este evento foi organizado e pelo tempo que passamos em conjunto!”

The Women's Art Register is proud to be part of the Art+Feminism movement, helping us to amplify the voices of Australian women artists around the globe. - Caroline Phillips, Melbourne, Australia

The support that I was able to access to organise an edit-a-thon was invaluable; it meant that I had the confidence (as a relatively inexperienced editor) to lead a session, approach a host, and ensure that the event was accessible.- Clare Qualmann, London, UK

This virtual edit-a-thon was a great way to get folks together and working on something empowering during the quarantine! Folks learned the basics of wiki editing and brought their own skills and interests to the group. We are so excited to be connected to more people interested in changing the narrative and representation in the fields of Craft! - Teresa Audet, Minneapolis, USA

Community Hours edit

To support our growing global community, this year we introduced online "Community Hours" on a variety of topics that might be useful for our community of organizers like promoting your event or offering case studies from our global community. In 2019-2020 we offered 15 different Community Hours, with most of the recordings of the sessions uploaded to WikiCommons ( for continued learning opportunities. These sessions are led by a mix of Regional Organizers, the leadership team, staff, and special guests from the Wikiverse from around the world. We wish to continue these efforts in 2020-2021. In the spirit of community care, we hope to have a few sessions dedicated to topics under that umbrella.

Indigenous Community Work edit

In collaboration with Wikimedia Norge, the Inuit Art Foundation and Inuit Futures Initiative, we are developing a project to add more circumpolar content from both Sami and Inuit populations. Art+Feminism will provide technical support for the events and training materials. We will work with a young Inuit scholar chosen by Inuit Futures to add and contribute to pages on Inuit people or history.

Following on this limited-term and grant-specific opportunity, we are committed to hiring a Regional Organizer for Indigenous Communities. In the past work with Indigenous communities has been facilitated by the Regional Organizer for Canada, and we believe that the creation of this new position is vital in order to increase our work within Indigenous communities globally, both with care and intention. This position will only be offered to someone who self-identifies as Indigenous. We envision the creation of this new role as a start, and are working on ways to continue partnerships with Indigenous knowledge keepers and producers, while respecting traditional knowledge protocols and equity processes.

Strategic Planning edit

The summer of 2020 we are in Phase 1/Discovery Phase of formal strategic planning facilitated by Wayfinding Partners. Wayfinding Partners work with non-profits with a racial justice lens, a value we share as Art+Feminism continues on the path to be an anti-racist organization. A silver lining to COVID-19 is this opportunity to stop racing forward under the premise of “business as usual” and to take this time for reflection and to ask big questions about our organization. And not just for our organization, but to hopefully model for others to join our work in a meaningful way as we continue to nurture our community with intention. We hope that with funding requested in this application we will be able to continue this journey. Board Development

We continue to experience steady progress with our board development. With the help of our founding board, guided by our ad-hoc Advisory Committee, we’ve determined the following for continued development of our board: This will be a working board, with an expectation of financial and non-financial support. Art+Feminism is at an exciting point where there are many possibilities and a lot to be imagined and quite honestly, figured out. This requires a particular type of engagement. We seek out board members with a wide range of expertise and experience, with the expectation that they will use their skill and knowledge to advocate and support the organization's mission. We also expect a financial contribution from everyone, which will be scaled to a diverse group of awesome people at the table (more below).

This will be a 100% giving board, at a level in which each board member is comfortable. The level in which a board member gives at is for internal purposes only; all board members have the same ability as all other board members regardless of tier level. These tiers will be revisited each year by the current board to reassess and adjust accordingly. Monthly giving is an option to achieve the overall annual commitment.

We expect that board members can agree to give at a certain tier, but are always encouraged to give as much as possible. We expect all board members to participate in small donor fundraising efforts by the organization (currently, we anticipate one campaign annually).

Small Donor Cultivation edit

This grant application includes support for the increase in accounting fees as the organization’s overall budget now exceeds $250,000 annually which requires a more formal review of finances and thus opens up numerous smaller funding opportunities, including exploring peer-to-peer fundraising and overall diversifying funding. We’re currently researching various donor platforms to find the right fit for us to do small (and large!) individual donor cultivation. We are in a unique position with a lot of potential by inviting our existing global community to be able to make financial contributions, of any size to help sustain the work of Art+Feminism. Art+Feminism’s current Executive Director has a track record of success with grassroots, peer-to-peer fundraising, most recently spearheading a crowdfunding campaign that raised over $40,000 in 2019 before coming to Art+Feminism.

Anti-Harassment Working Group (AHWG) edit

We take safety very seriously in the events we promote, which is why we have a Safe Space/Brave Space Policy that we require to be honored by all those who organize an editathon under the flag of Art+Feminism. The Anti-Harassment Working Group is a subcommittee dedicated to developing strategies and tools that help our community prevent, manage, and report online harassment that may occur as a result of their involvement with Art+Feminism projects. This initiative is a response to the experiences of harassment lived by members of our leadership collective, as well as to the reports that we have received from members of our community over the course of our organization’s history. We know from experience that Wikimedia’s online community is far from being a safe space for everyone, which is why we decided to create a group specifically charged with developing tools to prevent and document incidents of harassment or misbehavior, to guide users through the tools already in place via the Wikimedia Foundation. We have informed the Trust and Safety team, as well as the Legal team at the Wikimedia Foundation about the creation of this Working Group. In the first year, we have accomplished a remarkable body of work. In February 2020, we released the first version of the Toolkit for Security on Wikipedia. AHWG is currently leading a conversation among our community members around the Universal Code of Conduct proposed by WMF, and has been in touch with the Foundation’s Trust and Safety team along the way. AHWG members are also the key players in our WikiCred project.

Outside Expertise/Working with Consultants edit

Distinct areas where we wish to engage with outside expertise by way of consultants are with translation, restorative justice practices and facilitation, grant writing, and web maintenance.

Art+Feminism Impact Research Project edit

One of Art+Feminism’s co-founders and acting board President, Michael Mandiberg, is currently leading internal research that looks at the impact of Art+Feminism on addressing Wikipedia’s ongoing gender gap problem. In 2014 approximately 10-15% of the editor community were women, trans and non-binary people and only 15% of all biographies were about women, trans and non-binary people. Six years of many community initiatives to bridge this gap increased the overall percentage of biographies to 18%. The project seeks to better understand the contours of this change, by focusing on the articles in Wikiproject Visual Arts, the area of focus of two of the key initiatives: Art+Feminism and Black Lunch Table, and an area of interest to Women in Red. The result of this research will help provide a clearer picture of the work of Art+Feminism with some of the overall goals of the Wikimedia Foundation as a whole.

WikiCred Grant Initiative edit

We are delighted to share that we’ve received funding for a new initiative titled “Reading together: Reliability and Multilingual Global Communities”. This initiative, completely funded by WikiCred is a research project that will work to expand the definition and scope of what is considered a reliable source (WP:RS) on Wikipedia for marginalized communities. The project has three parts, with the possibility of a publication at the end:

Part 1: A research project to expand the definition, scope and interpretation of reliable sources for marginalized communities in multiple language versions of Wikipedia, including Spanish, English, and French.
Part 2: Art+Feminism to organize town halls for the community in multiple languages including Spanish, English, and French (Amber Berson is fluent in French and resides in Montréal, Canada, and Melissa Tamani is fluent in Spanish and resides in Lima, Peru).
Part 3: Art+Feminism to collect feedback and adjust expansion as a result of the town halls. The main deliverable of the project consists of a report with the results of the three phases, as well as a series of recommendations for different stakeholders in the Wikipedia community.

Calendar edit

September 2020 - October 2020

  • Onboarding of new and returning Regional Organizers, including Software Skills Training on Slack and Streak and orientation to Small Groups
  • Strategize, with Regional Organizers to create innovative and region-specific support for hosting virtual events
  • Research and build infrastructure for establishing a donor database
  • Email and Social media pledge campaign to previous node event organizers confirming the March 2021 editathon dates.
  • Kick-off Phase 2 of Strategic Planning

November 2020 - January 2021

  • Continued outreach to existing and new nodes.
  • Begin planning public programming around flagship event(s) to take place in March.
  • Organize launch of year-end small donor campaign around #GivingTuesday
  • Guide organizers through internal and external event funding opportunities
  • Outreach to build interest for new events in 2021.
  • We will utilize our project management structure along with the expertise of our regional organizer team to build new relationships.
  • Plan and hold training webinars on editing, and organizing (e.g., conflict resolution, event planning, grant writing, etc.)

February 2021

  • February is a month full of activity where we implement all of our strategies from the previous year's cycle of preparation and planning.
  • Continue online training sessions for organizers.

March - April 2021

  • The edit-a-thons!
  • Our regional organizers continue to support organizers hosting events throughout our peak months of March and April.

May 2021 - June 2021

  • Metrics: post-edit-a-thon, we spend the early part of our planning season compiling the outcomes from our various events in order to report on the number of attendees, as well as articles created and updated.
  • Complete of APG Midpoint Report
  • Review successes and areas for improvement within our global campaign strategy and goals.
  • Update website to reflect outcomes, press coverage, etc.

July 2021 - August 2021

  • Begin planning 2022 activities:
  • Confirm 2022 interest from current and potential regional organizers
  • Attend annual campaign strategy retreat.

September 2021 - December 2021

  • Onboarding of new and returning Regional Organizers, including Software Skills Training on Slack and Streak and orientation to Small Groups
  • Strategize, with Regional Organizers to create innovative and region-specific support for hosting virtual events
  • Email and Social media pledge campaign to previous node event organizers confirming the March 2022 editathon dates.
  • Begin planning public programming around flagship event(s) to take place in March.
  • Have team retreat around WikiConference North America (if travel is permitted)
  • Plan and launch Year-End Giving Campaign on #GivingTuesday

Staffing edit

See our full staffing plan here. We hope to increase our staff by 33% by expanding and evolving the role of part-time Project Administrator to full-time Program Manager. By expanding this position to full-time, the Program Manager will be able to fully take on the daily operations and completely oversee the primary parts of the annual campaign, which builds the overall capacity of the leadership team. Nina Yeboah is uniquely qualified for this role. She started with the organization in 2018 as a Community Fellow and has served as Project Administrator for the past year, in a part-time capacity, where she has exceeded all expectations. Her experience and leadership has been instrumental in the evolution of how our annual campaign operates. She's been critical to the development of how we work and the systems we use. We also are incrementally expanding our Regional Organizers, in this cycle we’ll be adding the Indigenous Community Organizer.

Map of Art+Feminism 2020 editathons showing DATE, NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS, DASHBOARD LINK

Target Audience edit

Location of 2020 edit-a-thons [points in query shows (1) number of participants (2) event date (3) link to dashboard] Art+Feminism has a truly global community, with events taking place in all inhabited continents. Despite the global pandemic, in 2020 events took place in 27 countries and 20 languages. Our 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 Dashboards show we have gained support from diverse communities. We've also seen support from within the Wikimedia community, from organizations like Wikimedia NYC and Women in Red, for example. Our events add a lot of content to the Commons and catalyzed campaigns like AfroCrowd and Black Lunch Table.

Realtime results : Map of Art+Feminism 2020 editathons showing DATE, NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS, DASHBOARD LINK

Risks/Challenges edit

Many of our challenges are not unique and some of our challenges are ongoing work that we’re happy to engage with as we continue to grow and evolve as an organization.

Global Pandemic/COVID-19 and Civil Rights Movement

As the current global pandemic has forced us (and everyone) into operating in only virtual spaces there are many risks and challenges. Whereas, the work of our edit-a-thons can somewhat easily translate to virtual space, the aspect of community care or an in-person event can be harder to replicate. Further, we anticipate that some of our organizers will simply not be able to organize an event in these times. Due to concrete access to resources. We have a few organizers each year that use our micro-funding as a means for internet connectivity at the physical event; it’s unlikely that every attendee will have access to stable internet connections for full participation. Further, we believe that many members of our community are engaged in critical off-Wikipedia work and activism as we find ourselves in the midst of a Civil Rights Movement. Additionally, as many individuals are faced with both of these factors, capacity to participate in an edit-a-thon is likely not at the top of the priority list for some of our community. And lastly, “zoom-fatigue” is very real. As we all continue using video calls as a primary means for gathering, we can only anticipate that the ability to capture new audiences will very likely be affected. Because of all these factors, combined with our internal focus on community building and retention, we anticipate that our numbers will not continue to grow in this year.

$250,000 Accounting Review Requirements

We’re incredibly excited that with this budget we’ll be able to accommodate the precarious place we’ve been tethering in with our overall annual budget and fully explore other streams of revenue. With the US tax code, any non-profit organization that is over a $250,000 annual budget, must have a certified accountant formally review all the financials. This type of work costs around $10,000. Our last grant from WMF was purposefully $249,000 so we wouldn’t incur this cost. However, being in this position made it very limited in what kind of fundraising we could explore. For instance, if we received a total of $5000 in donations over the year, we really would be losing thousands of dollars (not only in accounting fees, but also in labor). This proposed budget includes a line to cover those fees and we’ll now be able to fully explore. The risks here are that since we haven’t done this before, whereas our community’s giving potential is large, it is unknown. The investment in the costs of a platform to engage in this type of fundraising is also a calculated risk.

Leadership Transition

As planned for over a year, the last two co-founders involved with the day-to-day operations are stepping down at the end of August 2020. Making this upcoming year, the first cycle where no co-founders will be serving the organization in a day-to-day capacity. Their dedication, efforts, collaboration and leadership will be missed, but we do believe that we have a strong team in place. And we do recognize there are risks and challenges (as well as opportunities) without that institutional knowledge actively present in the room.

Intersectional Feminism/Anti-Racist Work

We’re on the long journey of decoloinzing and centering anti-racists practices with an intersectional feminist lens. We started doing restorative practices training this summer and purposefully sought out a strategic plan facilitator that operates with a social justice lens. We hope to include training as a budget line moving forward as an organization. This work along with the work of truly being anti-racist in practice is ongoing. The risk here is that this work takes time and needs the whole team involved to be effective.