Dominique from Côte d’Ivoire: Knowledge Equity Calendar

Originally published at: https://space.wmflabs.org/2019/12/09/dominique-from-cote-divoire-knowledge-equity-calendar/

Dominique (right) organizes “WikiMousso” workshops regularly
Yasield,
Atelier Wikidata 9 (cropped), CC BY-SA 4.0

December 9

Just like in several other countries in French-speaking Africa, there is a glaring lack of content on women from the Ivory Coast, both on Wikipedia and in other projects in the Wikimedia sphere. In this context, where we are working to reduce the considerable gender gap, equity for us refers to the fair treatment of information and the balance of content in the Wiki projects. For example, equity for us would not be an equal share of articles or photos on men and women, but an important, highlighted presence through quality content of notable women from our country in the different projects.

As part of the WikMousso events participants get also trained on how to use and add data to Wikidata
Yasield,Soirée contributive wikidata 33,CC BY-SA 4.0

On our way to establish knowledge equity, we are facing various challenges, the main one being the search for reliable sources. It is difficult to find primary and secondary sources when we create or improve articles on Ivorian women of note. We use a large part of the sources collected on the Internet. The immediate effect of this difficulty is sometimes the removal or the threat of removal of our produced articles and items. That is why we are seeking to establish strong partnerships with national institutions and structures that can help us in this regard. 

And the second challenge is the financing of activities. We would like to diversify our funding sources to give a broader deployment to our projects. In terms of funding, to help small communities to better exploit their ideas and projects, we suggest that the conditions for granting grants be reviewed. Due to several constraints, new contributors with great ideas have difficulties obtaining financial support. This is a major concern faced by members of several user groups in Africa. I would also suggest that the community look at capacity building in French-speaking countries that do not speak English well. Especially since 90% of the movement’s important documents and texts are published in English, and almost all meetings are held in English. We need to take these into account, especially during important meetings such as Wikimania and Wikimedia Summit.

At the moment, we are mainly working on the training of our members, the search for reliable sources and the qualitative contribution. But an important aspect is also the search for strategic and financial partners. We are a solid team that knows how to highlight each other’s skills. This allows us to be even more efficient in the execution of our projects. We remain united and work together to achieve our goals. That’s what makes our strength.

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