Research:How does endogenous policy affect editor work?

This question set is among the high level research priorities for the Wikimedia Summer of Research 2011. The full list is here, and this is categorized as "RQ7".


(RQ7.1) How have policy and guidelines changed over time, in proportion to content in other namespaces?

(RQ7.2) What cohorts of editors have contributed the most to policy over time?

(RQ7.3) What are the differences in policy creation per language?

(RQ7.4) Does gaining additional userights extend a wiki career, and if so do some userrights have more motivation value than others?

(RQ7.5) Do additional userrights in non-English Wikipedias (e.g., Russian) predict to greater editor retention?

(RQ7.6) Are policies and guidelines being cited more often towards new editors? Beschastnikh et al.[1] report that every week over 10% of editors citing policies are first-timers, suggesting that (a) policy citing tends to be inclusive but (b) an important share of editors citing policies are (overzealous?) first-timers. Citing a policy as an early act of an editor strengthens community ties but may affect the survival of other editors.


  1. Beschastnikh, I., Kriplean, T., and Mcdonald, D. W. Wikipedian Self-Governance in action: Motivating the policy lens. In Proceedings of the 2008 AAAI International Conference on Weblogs and Social Media (2008), .