Grants:APG/Proposals/2012-2013 round1/Wikimedia CH/Staff proposal assessment
Applicants should read this document to familiarise themselves with the assessment criteria; however, it should be edited only by FDC-related staff. The staff will use the document to set out their objective assessment of each funding request from eligible entities – specifically, to determine the extent to which plans align with the mission goals of the Wikimedia movement, and the extent to which the entity is well-placed to execute those plans effectively. The staff will base this report on proposals from entities and input from the community and other stakeholders (including, where required, deeper due-diligence on the entity's previous track record within the Wikimedia movement). The staff will provide completed reports to the FDC, which will then make a recommendation to the Board of Trustees on funding allocations.
|Date of submission [mm/dd/yy]||10/01/12|
|Adherence to proposal process [yes/no]||yes|
|Adherence to legal, regulatory, and policy regulations [yes/no]||yes|
|Adherence to US anti-terrorism laws [yes/no]||yes|
|Currency requested (e.g., EUR, GBP, INR)||USD|
|Exchange rate used (currency requested to $US) and date accessed (mm/dd/yy)||1.0000|
|Total amount proposed to the FDC for the upcoming year annual plan [in $US]||USD 560,000|
|Total amount proposed to the FDC for the upcoming year annual plan [in currency requested]||USD 560,000|
|Summary staff assessment [substantial concerns: none/some/many]||some|
Table I: Financial summary
|FDC funds allocated last year ($US)||FDC funds proposed this year ($US)||Change from what was allocated last year (as a +/− %)||Proposed change in staff costs (USD and % increase or decrease)|
|USD 0||USD 560,000||NA||NA|
To what extent does the plan address the strategic goals and priorities of the movement (one to two paragraphs)?
- WMCH’s plan is aligned with the strategic priority areas Improve quality (through GLAM, Free content generation, and Education) and Stabilize infrastructure (through Community support, Support to like-minded associations, Staff and office).
- WMCH is focused on GLAM initiatives and community support. A large number of their initiatives support GLAM partnerships and content generation, and partnerships with scientific and cultural institutions within Switzerland. One area of unusual focus on offline activities supports the priority area of increased reach, especially in areas of the world where online access may be limited.
- It is important to note when considering WMCH’s Community initiative that a significant portion of the initiative's budget is devoted to supporting the development of WMCH and its partner entities rather than solely to providing support to editors and other community members. (A portion of this budget is also dedicated to international programs, mostly focused on offline efforts in Africa.)
- WMCH’s international programs may not be strongly linked to its own mission of promoting free knowledge within Switzerland. An argument may be made that some outreach activities are language-driven rather than geography-driven and that the benefits of the content generated may be global. Offline activities may increase reach but are not strongly linked to participation and so are unlikely to have far-reaching effects within Switzerland.
Context of the entity and community
- To what extent does the context of the entity (e.g., community participation, fundraising context, sociopolitical environment) enable or inhibit the entity's potential for impact?
- To what extent does the entity's experience or maturity enable or inhibit the entity's potential for impact?
- WMCH’s focus is different from the focus of some other affiliated entities in two important respects: significant language diversity within their primary geography, and resources devoted to programs outside of its geographic vicinity, including offline and content-generation programs in Africa.
- WMCH must work across several target languages: Italian, French, German, and to a lesser extent Rumantsch and English, and therefore distributes program resources across these language groups. This has influenced their strategy to hire several part-time community managers rather than one person for a greater percentage of time. WMCH is confident of the awareness of the Swiss public around the free knowledge movement: their outreach efforts therefore target like-minded organizations and academic institutions rather than the general public.
- WMCH has participated in several successful fundraisers. Since July 2012, they have appointed a qualified Chief Administrative Officer. However, WMCH has not provided a current detailed strategy document, and their track record with the WMF Grants Program is mixed.
Feasibility and risks for the annual plan
How feasible is the annual plan (one to four paragraphs)? Specifically:
- To what extent are the budget, staffing, availability of volunteers, and other resources realistic for achieving the anticipated outcomes?
- Are the timelines realistic for the proposed initiatives and associated activities?
- Are there acknowledged and/or unacknowledged risks in the proposal?
- WMCH’s budget emphasizes programs: staffing makes up about 25% of the total budget and programs about 75%. There are some questions about WMCH’s ability to execute its programs effectively with the staffing plan proposed.
- WMCH’s plan emphasizes program areas in which it is experienced, like GLAM and content-generation. WMCH has acknowledged difficulty in recruiting volunteers to adequately staff GLAM initiatives, but at the same time is increasing this type of programming without increasing staff. Education is a new area for WMCH, and more information would be required in order to evaluate their preparedness to execute an Education program of this scope successfully. Regarding international programs, there may be concerns regarding the efficiency of WMCH’s direct approach vs. a partnership or microgrants model.
- Moreover, the scope of WMCH’s proposal seems very broad and may be beyond the capacity of WMCH to execute efficiently and successfully.
Summary of expert opinions and/or community commentary
- Summary of the opinions of subject-matter experts on the plan
- Summary of community commentary on the plan
- Please see the proposal discussion page.
Table II: Scores, comments and feedback
Scores provide only a preliminary assessment for consideration by the FDC. The rubric for scoring is in table III.
|Dimensions||Criteria||Score (1–5)||Comments and feedback|
|Potential for impact against strategic priorities||(A) The plan addresses the Wikimedia movement global targets||4||The plan addresses the strategic targets of Improve quality and Stabilize infrastructure.|
|(B) The initiatives in the plan have the potential to lead to the global targets, if executed well||3||The initiatives if successful will contribute to the global targets somewhat, but are not very specific.|
|(C) The initiatives in the plan have the potential to lead to significant impact, given context and amount of funds proposed||3||There is not a clear indication of potential for significant impact.|
|Ability to execute||(D) The entity has the resources, skills, and capacity (staff, volunteer, non-staff) for the plan to succeed||2||Significant concerns about entity's ability to execute on a plan of this magnitude, given staff and volunteer capacity|
|(E) The entity has a record of success in similar initiatives||3||Have some record of success with similar initiatives in previous years (e.g., GLAM)|
|(F) The entity's leadership is effective, committed, and relatively stable||4||The leadership is relatively committed and stable|
|Efficient use of funds||(G) The funding requested is reasonable given the proposed initiatives||3||The budget is reasonable given initiatives proposed.|
|(H) The entity has a record of using funds efficiently and staying on budget||3||Concerns about late reports in the past and possible inefficient use of some movement funds (ex. TAO).|
|Quality of proposed measures of success||(I) Clear indicators of success are outlined in the plan||3||Metrics are specific but not completely aligned with strategic prioirties presented.|
|(J) A plan is in place to track the proposed metrics||4||It is fairly clear how WMCH will track these metrics.|
|(K) The entity has a feasible plan in place to track the proposed metrics||3||The plan seems fairly feasible with the organization's current resources.|
|Potential to add knowledge and/or other benefits to the movement||(L) The initiatives in the plan, if successful, could be helpful and/or productively replicated elsewhere in the movement||3||Initiatives are not necessarily innovative, and therefore may not lead to much replication|
|(M) The entity is ready to share with the movement the lessons learned from the initiatives||4||WMCH has been open to sharing lessons learnt|
Table III: Scoring rubric
|Dimensions||Evaluation criteria||1 = Weak or no alignment with criterion||3 = Moderate alignment with criterion||5 = Strong alignment with criterion|
|Potential for impact against strategic priorities||(A) The plan addresses the Wikimedia movement global targets||The plan will not directly address any global targets||The plan will partially address global targets or other goals that are closely related to the global targets||The plan will directly address several global targets|
|(B) The initiatives have the potential to lead to the targets, if executed well||The initiatives have no clear connection to global targets||Some or all of the initiatives have an unclear relationship to global targets||The initiatives have been shown (by the entity or the movement) to lead to global targets|
|(C) The initiatives have the potential to lead to significant impact, given context and amount of funds proposed||The initiatives will have marginal impact in the local community and the broader Wikimedia community, given context and amount of funds proposed||The initiatives proposed may have a significant impact in the local community, given context and amount of funds proposed||The initiatives could have significant impact at scale, both in the entity's local community and in the broader movement, given context and amount of funds proposed|
|Ability to execute||(D) The entity has the resources, skills, and capacity (staff, volunteer, non-staff) for the plan to succeed||The entity has neither the number nor the amount of resources, skills, and capacity needed for success.||The entity has some relevant staff and volunteer capacity, but may be under-resourced for some initiatives||The entity is well-resourced with the relevant skills and capacity for success|
|(E) The entity has a record of success in similar initiatives||The entity has had trouble succeeding in similar initiatives||The entity has not engaged in similar initiatives in the past||The entity has conducted similar initiatives in the past and has been successful in achieving desired results|
|(F) The entity's leadership is effective, committed, and relatively stable||Leadership has been unstable (e.g., changing on an annual basis)||Current leadership is committed to the entity; some concerns exist around stability or effectiveness of leadership||Current and past leaders have demonstrated the ability to develop and execute on strategic plans; leadership team has been stable and transitions have been smooth|
|Efficient use of funds||(G) The funding requested is reasonable given the proposed initiatives||Based on FDC experience and relative to other proposals, the plan contains significant over- or under-budgeting, and/or has not thoroughly accounted for costs||Based on FDC experience and relative to other proposals, the budget is generally consistent with the initiatives; some initiatives are likely to be over- or under-budgeted||Based on FDC experience and relative to other proposals, the budget is reasonable, and rigorous cost projections have been presented|
|(H) The entity has a record of using funds efficiently and staying on budget||The entity has a poor record of budgetary management: e.g., consistently and significantly below budget (such as 50% underspending), and drawing on organizational reserves due to overspending||The entity has a middling record of budgetary management; e.g., generally on-budget for its biggest initiatives and cost items, properly recording any over- and under-spending, and with plans in place for improvements||The entity has consistently strong record of financial management; e.g., consistently staying on or below budget (within ~5% of budget), and putting surplus funds towards the entity's and/or movement's goals|
|Quality of proposed measures of success||(I) Clear indicators of success are outlined in the plan||Initiatives have no associated indicators of success, or the proposed indicators are unrealistic and/or unmeasurable||Each initiative has indicators of success, but at least some indicators are unrealistic or are not clearly connected to the initiative||Each initiative has a realistic and carefully framed set of indicators of success associated with them, which are rigorous and time-bound|
|(J) A system is in place to track the proposed metrics||The plan does not include methodology or timing for tracking and collecting metrics to measure progress against proposed indicators of success||A proposal to track progress against indicators exists, but has flawed methodology or unrealistic timelines and initiatives||The plan includes timing and tracking of proposed metrics, and additional initiatives (e.g., surveys, research) to track indicators|
|(K) The entity has a feasible system to track the proposed metrics||No systems are in place to track metrics, or staff or volunteer capacity to manage metrics tracking||There is some overall capacity (e.g., staff, volunteers) to track and monitor metrics, but the entity does not clearly have the relevant skills to do this||High-quality systems, and the necessary skills and capacity to manage these systems, are in place|
|Potential to add knowledge and/or other benefits to the movement||(L) The initiatives, if successful, could be helpful and/or productively replicated elsewhere in the movement||The initiatives would not be relevant to other movement groups||Some initiatives may be relevant to other movement groups||Many initiatives proposed are new or have seldom been tried elsewhere in the movement; if successful, other movement entities would benefit from doing similar initiatives|
|(M) The entity is ready to share with the movement the lessons learned from the initiatives||The entity is isolated from other movement groups and rarely shares information; the entity's leaders and members seldom participate in movement-wide functions||The entity is somewhat active within the movement, and is developing more relationships with other movement entities with which it could share lessons learned||The entity has regular communication with other movement entities, is a regular participant in Wikimedia events, and has a track record of sharing with others|