Case Study

Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit that hosts Wikipedia and other free knowledge projects, based in San Francisco, California. The Wikimedia Foundation seeks to make it easier for everyone to share what they know and support the communities of volunteers around the world who edit, improve, and add knowledge across Wikimedia projects.

Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) was seeking a partner to help to review the history of their grantmaking work at WMF and to understand the ways they had designed for more equitable structures and approaches in grant making and the ways in which they had perpetuated structural inequities.

We collaborated with the former Director of Community Resources to design a CR Talks Equity Day, a 4-hour program designed to engage WMF’s Community Resources team in design-thinking around the ways principles of social justice could be applied to their grant making strategies.

We established common principles and vocabulary around equity, anti-oppression, and change management, built consensus and developed a shared understanding of anti-oppression at the individual and systemic level, provided tools for actionable plans for transformation and community education and clarified boundaries of individual and institutional responsibility and cross-team accountability. We were able to create more meaningful evaluations of personal and collective power to affect change at the individual, interpersonal, and institutional level and make implicit assumptions explicit through dialogue and reflection.