Grants:IdeaLab/Wiki Goes Goethe

Wiki Goes Goethe (WikiGoGo)
Increasing quantitiy and quality of articles about German culture (literature, film, art, etc.) in other Wikipedia language versions
idea creator
project manager
this project needs...
created on22:23, 11 February 2015 (UTC)

Project idea


What is the problem you're trying to solve?


In nearly 40 Wikipedias there are portals taking care of articles about Germany. Also there are 160 Goethe-Institutes around the world, which have the mission to support people who are interested to learn German, offering specialized libraries and reading rooms and to inform about German culture and art.

I would like to make a connection between these two "natural" partners for free knowledge in this field.

What is your solution?


The solution isn't really a great new invention. It's about bringing established ways we work on Wikipedia to the subject. Edit-a-thons, contests, books- & media grants or even a Wikipedian in residence.

Showing the possiblities of this collaboration is best and practically done by organizing "kick-off"-lighthouse projects in a few countries at which Wikipedians and members of the Goethe-Institutes explore the best possible ways of supporting more editing of good articles about German culture, art and more in the respective Wikipedia project.

Therefor I already had a general talk with members of the head office of the Goethe-Institut in Munich who are in charge of coordinating aspects of support, editorial stuff, libraries and media etc. globally, together with the local chiefs of staff in 94 countries. They are already fascinated by the idea and they feel that supporting Wikipedians should be part of the official mission of the Goethe Institut.

I would like to find co-owners and supporters of the project in local Wikipedias. Therefore I will contact and ping some Wikipedians in the next days who are already somehow connected themselves with writing about Germany in their particular Wikipedia.

I already have a certain idea how to do this in 2015, but I also would like to see what input comes from fellow Wikipedians around the world. So please don't hesitate to give your input, your questions so that this project can become success and fun in many Wikipedias.

What is the concrete proposal to make Kick-Off events


This plan is still raw, but hopefully inspiring to people who like to make "Nägel mit Köpfen" ("to put one's money where one's mouth is").

Volunteers editing Germany-related articles maybe have certain special fields in mind, in which they would like to focus together, e.g. "german filmdirectors of the 20th century" or "contemporary german authors". I'm sure that together with the Goethe Institut a list of possible and exciting focus fields can be found. This list would give an Edit-a-Thon a good frameword of targeted content. It would enable finding good source material and other preparation which makes editing fun and substantial.

Then, let's say 8-10 weeks from April to June, countries/languages in which we managed to connect interested volunteers and Goethe-Institutes would run an editing contest or a similiar thing with a "casual kind of" deadline. For the Kick-Off a weekend event could be organized (e.g. at the Goethe-Institut in the country) where as many as possible people meet, connect each other for real and/or online, using the library and other sources for preparing the edit-a-thon and having a good time together. At the end of the 8-10 weeks there could be a closing weekend event with some cultural supporting programme. On the closing weekend new or improved articles could be presented and talked about and plans for a more casual cooperation in the subject could be discussed. Also then the interested volunteers would have got to know all the staff from the local Goethe Institut - what would make future connecting/supporting much easy.

Overview: List of Goethe Institutes around the world: List in Wikipedia, List at Website of Goethe Institut

Wait, so what is the "Goethe Institut" again?


"The Goethe-Institut (GI) is a non-profit German cultural association operational worldwide with 160 institutes. It is promoting the study of the German language abroad and encouraging international cultural exchange and relations.

The Goethe-Institut fosters knowledge about Germany by providing information on German culture, society and politics. This includes the exchange of films, music, theatre, and literature. Goethe cultural societies, reading rooms, and exam and language centers have played a role in the cultural and educational policies of Germany for more than 60 years.

It is named after German polymath Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The Goethe-Institut e.V. is autonomous and politically independent.



short term goals

  • finding 5-6 Wikipedias in which a group of volunteers is interested to do an (exemplary) Kick-Off event
  • organizing Wiki Goes Goethe (WikiGoGo) in two quarters of 2015 with each with three Wikipedias, running eight weeks with two weekend-events (beginning/end). Ideally the two quarters would be April-June and mid-September to mid-December.


  • improving quantity and quality of articles connected with German culture, German art and German biographies.
  • establishing a basis for future sustainable cooperation between interested Wikipedians and the Goethe Institut in the related countries.

long term goals



  • building connections between (official) cultural organizations and that part of the global volunteers who have fun writing & editing about Germany
  • bringing new editors to Wikipedia by connecting language learning people (hence future bi-linguals) with the chance to share free knowledge about their country of interest and its culture

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Get Involved



  • Project manager coordinating the contacts to Goethe Institut on the global level, supporting the local project manager with everything needed Jensbest (talk) 03:02, 12 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Volunteer Slowking4 in DC Slowking4 (talk) 15:31, 17 April 2017 (UTC)


  • After seeing that particular grill suspended from the top of the three steel poles like a spinning pendulum, I became curious about what the cuisine of the Saarland has to offer; not just for myself, but also for anyone else. Lo Ximiendo (talk) 22:06, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
Slowking4 (talk) 15:30, 17 April 2017 (UTC)
  • A good option to collaborate with an organization, and to improve articles on a topic, wirtten in other langages than the "native" one. X black X (talk) 13:12, 16 April 2018 (UTC)