Grants talk:IdeaLab/Inspire/Funding

Latest comment: 8 years ago by Wertuose in topic Limits for budget

Please post your questions/comments about the funding page here!

Open data - Examples and exceptionsEdit

"Any code or other materials must be published and released as free and open-source. Licensing should be compatible with current Wikimedia and MediaWiki practices."

Can we provide examples of other materials (e.g., program checklists, pamphlets, etc.)? Also, can we add a note re: consent from participants for their data to be shared? In the case of my IEG, I can/will not share interview transcripts unless my participants give consent, as it's their data and a breach of confidentiality could potentially pose risk. (This is a requirement set by my university's IRB agreement, too.) --Mssemantics (talk) 21:29, 16 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Nice idea about the consent form - as far as I know we don't have a formal consent form (sounds a bit bureaucratic too). As far as the examples go, you can use Google forms or Google office templates, but Excel is discouraged as it is not free. Is that what you mean? Jane023 (talk) 21:39, 16 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As far I know, the survey or other personal data must be published anonymously (or publish only the summary of data). About open-source is related with a tool development (if I take "the idea" from IEG). Regards Superzerocool (talk) 01:22, 17 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It would also apply to other written materials (promotional material, training material, checklists, other documentation) that are developed to be used with the project since it is to be put on wiki for use by other people in future endeavors. Also, beyond outside confidentiality policies, I'm interested in hearing about the best way to get candid participation by women in surveys without making it obvious who is commenting if people want to stay anonymous. So, I would like to have the wording reflect that the data would be only be summarized in a general way if anonymity is desired by the participants. Let's make sure everyone has the same understanding of the practices that will be expected by participants and data collectors. Sydney Poore/FloNight (talk) 02:18, 17 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sydney Poore/FloNight, exactly! I think it's crucial that everyone has the same understanding. I would be happy to share a draft of a consent form that people could use if they choose to. Not to make things more bureaucratic, but to communicate clearly and to protect participants' confidentiality.--Mssemantics (talk) 18:03, 17 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Mssemantics: you raise a very good point - while it may be your practice (and your university's requirement) to protect the privacy and confidentiality of your participants, it would be nice to see this somewhat standardized across projects, or at the very least for ones that are focused on research (vs. ones that focus on building tools, etc.). -Thepwnco (talk) 15:02, 21 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I see that a funding committee has spontaneously formed. I'm unsure what process was used for this formation.

Could staff please clarify a few points, which I make particularly given the greater challenge of following the text faced by those whose first language is not English?

  1. The key for the rubric scores (1–10), which I recall comes from me, uses "alignment" as the anchor in all cases. Could it be made explicit in situ that this refers to the WMF's mission and strategic plan. This is what I gather from the "Eligibility" section way above, and I'm wondering whether my assumption is correct. Incidentally, the statement in question ("Proposals should increase gender diversity on Wikimedia projects while supporting the achievement of Wikimedia's mission and strategic priorities.") seems an odd fit as the lead to the "Eligibility" section—wouldn't it be better as the opening of the "Project selection criteria"?
    "Alignment" refers not to the mission or strategic plan, but how well the proposal aligns with each of the scoring criteria. If this is not clear, please suggest a better wording for the key. Increasing gender diversity is the basic eligibility criteria and project selection criteria so we wanted to be sure it is emphasized in both sections. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. Eligible projects item 7: "Grantees need to be in compliance with all existing agreements with the Wikimedia Foundation, including grant, chapter, user group, thematic organization, or fundraising agreements." That's unclear to me. Those agreements are hard to find, aren't they? What is expected of applicants in this respect?
    I've linked to all the respective agreements. I'm still looking for the most recent fundraising agreement. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Project selection criteria: could they be in the same order as in the scoring rubric—for the sake of applicants? The criteria look solid, but the expression of present vs. future probability/certainty is inconsistent in the first item, "Impact potential", which might be unclear to second-language speakers and translators:

    "Does it increase gender diversity in Wikimedia projects?" [present, but surely that's unlikely ... perhaps better as: "Does it have potential to increase gender diversity in ..."?)

    "Does it have potential for online impact?" [future (potential)]

    "Can it be sustained, ... after the grant ends?" [future]

    There's also an inconsistency in binary vs. continuum:

    "Can the scope be accomplished in the proposed timeframe?" [yes/no]

    "How realistic/efficient is the budget?" [continuum: to what extent?]

    "Do the participants have the necessary skills/experience?" [yes/no]

    You've gone for binaries in the wording almost everywhere, which can be graded through the 1–10 scores, sure; although I'm not quite sure that the pipeline to the mission and strategic priorities is simple. Do the mission and priorities map onto the criteria in any clear way?

    Thanks for these suggestions. I've updated the wording. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. While on the subject of the strategic plan, the link-target is currently set to this rather messy page. Perhaps link directly to the plan document? Even then, the 13-page document is a big and diffuse read no matter what language you speak. Could its relevance be pin-pointed?
    Both links are the same. Can you please relink to the second document? I've highlighted the strategic priorities. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Sorry, Alex: it presently targets the "summary page" as opposed to the actual pdf document embedded within that page. I'm just concerned to keep to a minimum the amount of, and accessibility to, bureacractic English-language text that aplicants might feel they need to navigate. Tony (talk) 07:20, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Likewise, the mission statement is useful only if a biiiig-picture generalised mission helps. It's out of date, I'm afraid—mentions a "network of chapters", but nothing about user groups and thorgs. Nothing about gender diversity. And there are further links to bylaws, vision, and values: hmmm, my head is spinning; are these are rabbit holes for the poor applicants to dip into? Why not copy the relevant text and links from both docs into a (brief) resources page to make it easier? (FloNight's quote at the Strategic Plan page is good, and the "Contents" links might be useful if section-linked for the specific purposes of this scheme.)
  6. Could "Grants friendly space policy" be linked?
    This is still under draft and will be posted soon. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:19, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Tony (talk) 11:06, 19 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

initial thoughts and feedbackEdit

Is there a reason why proposals should have both quantitative and qualitative measures of success? While I think a mixed method approach is usually strongest, I can also imagine cases where it would be difficult to 'put a number' on the expected impact.

Having both quantitative and qualitative measures of success allows us to understand the impact of the projects and our grantmaking. While some projects cannot develop quantitative measures that show long-term impact (such as % of editors retained over a certain time period or amount of content created), most can list measures such as the number of people involved in organizing the project, number of people reached by the project (in its initial phase). There may be some cases quantitative measures just don't make sense, but they are still worthwhile projects. We can identify these projects in the idea stage and work with the organizers to make sure we have a way to evaluate the effectiveness of the project. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Where is the Inspire Grants Friendly Space Policy? My understanding is that this is not something that has yet been drafted. If so, is the idea that committee members will be involved in creating it?

This is still under draft and will be sent to the committee for comments early next week. I've made a note clarifying this on the page. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Might it be possible to include some guidelines that try to ensure that funds are distributed across projects and language communities (e.g. setting a max percentage for funded projects having an impact only on English Wikipedia)?

While we have target languages and communities for the campaign, we also do not want to limit participation by setting maximums on any one type of community. We will be doing more extensive outreach and translation work to engage the target languages/communities. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I also agree with Tony1's comments above regarding compliance with "existing agreements with the Wikimedia Foundation, including grant, chapter, user group, thematic organization, or fundraising agreements"

I've added links to the existing agreements. Hope that clarifies. Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks. -Thepwnco (talk) 15:37, 21 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Thanks for the feedback! Alex Wang (WMF) (talk) 21:32, 22 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Limits for budgetEdit

Hi. Maybe it comes from my auditor origin, but I think the main point of every grant proposal is the budget. When we evaluate a project we need to compare its goals with the budget. And I think that we can set upper limits for each activity type. All expenses over the limit must be paid by organizers. Alex, what do you think about it? Maybe similar proposals have already been made in the past and refused :) --Wertuose (talk) 06:24, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wertuose, while I'd not frame the budget as "the main point", the way it relates to activities, and especially to outcomes, is very important. I see that the rubric contains this: "Is the budget realistic/efficient?" Now you've raised the matter, I wonder whether this might clarify things: "Is the budget realistic, and is it likely to deliver value for money?" Alex may wish to comment. Tony (talk) 07:13, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Tony, the point I wanted to underline in my proposal is the "Value for Money", and this is what you mentioned above. I didn't want to say that outcome is less important, simply these are different evaluation methods (intercomparisons between budget/activities/outcomes). Relationship between costs and outcomes is the key performance indicator for the grant. And I wrote my opinion not for controversy, just wanted to express my view.--Wertuose (talk) 14:57, 23 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
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