Shani Evenstein Sigalov
Shani Evenstein Sigalov

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world;
"the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself.
"Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
— From "Man and Superman" by George Bernard Shaw

"To see a World in a Grain of Sand
"And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
"Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
"And Eternity in an hour."
— From "Auguries of Innocence" by William Blake

About me

I am an educator, researcher and Free Knowledge advocate, focusing on bridging gender, language and social gaps in free knowledge projects.

I joined the Wikimedia Movement as a volunteer in 2011, on the first day of Wikimania Haifa. My home wiki is the Hebrew Wikipedia, where I am also an administrator, and I am a member of Wikimedia Israel. As a volunteer in the Wikimedia Movement, I have been heavily involved in Outreach work (Education, GLAM, Libraries, Medicine, WikiWomen and Wikidata). Prior to joining the Board of Trustees, I served as the Chairperson for both Wikimedia Medicine and Wikipedia & Education User Group (which I resigned in order to join the BoT). I am also a founding member of the Wikipedia & Libraries User Group, and a former board member of Wikimedia Israel. In the past few years, I have been involved in the Strategic process and served as an active member of the Partnerships Strategy working group.

As an educator, my work focuses on the intersection between Education, Technology, Innovation and Openness. On September 2020, I have wrapped a decade of working as an EdTech Innovation Strategist at the School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University (TAU). I have also served as a lecturer on campus since 2013. During my tenure, I have designed and led academic courses focusing on Wikimedia projects. I opened the first for-credit elective course in the world for undergraduates that focuses on medical content - my students contributed over 13% of Hebrew Wikipedia’s medical content and these articles received millions of page views. Two years later, I opened another Wikipedia course available to all undergraduates at TAU, and in 2018 transformed it again and opened the first academic course in the world to feature Wikidata.

I received my BA (English Literature & French Culture) and MA (Education, Technology & Learning program) from TAU. I am now pursuing a PhD in Education and Technology, researching the Semantic Web, and specifically Wikidata, as a learning platform. In 2019 I was awarded a 3-years PhD scholarship, and serve as a Research Fellow in the Azrieli Foundation's PhD Research Fellow Program. The 2021-2022 academic year is the last one for my PhD, and am currently also a Visiting Fellow at the Digital Humanities Research Hub at School of Advanced Study - University of London.

Besides my Wiki work, I also serve as Chief Editor at Project Ben-Yehuda, a free online library of Hebrew writings, and the Chairperson for the non profit that supports it.

My work

Since August 15, 2019, I am a member of Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, selected as an Affiliate-selected Board seat.

As of September 2021, I serve as the Board's first Vice Chair.

On September 2022, I was re-elected for a second term that will commence December 2022.

I serve on the following Committees and roles:

  • Vice Chair, Board of Trustees - since September 2021.
  • Chair, the Community Affairs Committee - since inception (first as a `task force` in December 2020; and then as an official Board Committee on Feb 24 2021). Note: Temporarily (March-June 2022), a member, in order to serve as Acting Chair of the Product & Tech Committee.
  • Member, the Product Committee - since inception (May 2020). Note:Temporarily (March-June 2022), am Acting Chair of this Committee.
  • Member, the Board Governance Committee - practically since Nov 2020, officially since Dec 2020.
  • Liaison, the Affiliations Committee - since August 2019.
  • Liaison, the MCDC - since inception, November, 2021.

Previous roles:

  • Member, the Audit Committee - August 2019 - April 2021.
  • Acting Vice Chair - June 2021 - September 2021
  • Chair, ad hoc Brand Committee - since inception (November 2020) - October 2021.
  • Alternate, the Special Projects Committee - since August 2019, till it was dissolved.
  • Member, the ad hoc Transition Committee - from Feb 25th 2021, till it was dissolved in Jan 2022.

Contact Info: You are most welcome to leave any comments / questions / requests in the discussion page, or via this email: shani(_AT_)

Disclaimer: This is the account I to use for edits I make in the role of a Wikimedia Foundation Trustee. However, the Foundation does not vet all my activities. Edits, statements, or other contributions made by my volunteer account, User:Esh77, may not reflect the views of the Foundation and/or Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees.