People. To achieve sustainable growth and resilience of our Movement, we recommend an approach based on diverse pathways for continued and improved engagement of people along with financial and staff support for it. These pathways need to include existing Movement organizing, building of partnerships, and technical engagement opportunities, but also acknowledge new ways of contributing, like encouraging and empowering Movement advocates.
Supporting individuals in this way will enable more people to take part and lead to more online and offline activities. As these new organizers will receive professional training and coaching, among other tools, it will benefit their level of expertise and professional lives overall. As a result, they will either continue to be ardent spokespeople for the vision and goals of our Movement or build a livelihood through and from their engagement, having options to become contractors or staff of regional structures, supporting the continued growth of the Movement.
Following a people-centered approach, we must begin to recognize and appreciate not only editing contributions, but the value of mentoring, training, advocating, and other activities which strengthen our Movement. We must develop further support systems to enable and engage all stakeholders. Finding improved ways to recognize and appreciate their work, providing a proper environment, and tailored pathways that attract and retain more people from a variety and diversity of languages and cultural backgrounds will increase our outreach on a local or global level.
We need to provide more visible and easy-to-access support to strengthen our mutual ties with all types of stakeholders. Developing protocols to enhance and expand our mutually beneficial relationships with partners and providing them with metrics on the impact and use of materials they provided will be mutually beneficial and could extend our outreach as stewards of free knowledge.
We need to recognize and celebrate that there are more avenues to participate in the Movement than editing alone. Volunteering occurs as a privilege to those who have time to commit to unpaid services. If we are to grow, we need to consider designing systems which compensate people for non-editing volunteerism, such as advocacy and capacity building, through various means which could include honoraria, stipends, reimbursement of expenses, scholarships, equipment, internet access, or other forms of recognition.
Financial resources. To achieve sustainable growth and resilience of our Movement, we recommend an approach based on several actions to ensure the availability of needed financial resources through diversification of the overall revenue channels. More targeted efforts in local contexts could lead to higher yields with smaller efforts and could serve to bring more balance and equity in revenues globally. For example, building up and increasing the capacity to raise, spend, and account for funds could promote equity between unequally privileged regions of the world.
Fundraising strategies should be tailored to local context and needs, but we must also ensure that we have agreed upon limits that are respected by all — such as the design serving the mission and honoring basic donors’ rights, or the principle that products and properties created by the Movement remain non-commercial. To allow for movement growth we must develop an overarching long-term strategy, which is adaptable to local contexts, to be overseen by the global Governance Body, to provide for sufficient revenues to guarantee the sustainability of the Movement.
One avenue that could be explored is considering monetizing the application programming interfaces (API) of Wikipedia and Wikidata. We are not capitalizing on this to meet our resourcing needs, i.e. while keeping the APIs free for everyone, we could explore offering “tiered” premium service for large users of our API. Successful open-source software projects tend to rely on a wide array of stakeholders with diverse goals and interests sharing the resource burden (money, staff, volunteer time, etc.) of improving the software, which does not currently happen for our platform. With more intentional stewardship we might be able to realize its potential.
In general, the resource generation opportunities in our products and platforms need to be further explored, through the development of a long-term strategy to increase revenue across stakeholders for not only meeting current but also future needs.