Submissions:2021/How the Smithsonian and Wiki Education are adding biographies of American women

From WikiConference North America
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This submission has been accepted for WikiConference North America 2021.


How the Smithsonian and Wiki Education are adding biographies of American women


Global & Local, Inclusion & Diversity, Depth & Breadth for Newer Editors

Type of session:



In 2021, the Smithsonian American Women's History Initiative partnered with Wiki Education to run a series of four Wiki Scholars courses with Smithsonian Affiliates. Smithsonian Affiliates are a diverse group of over 200 GLAM organizations across the US with a variety of focuses and ways of engaging with their patrons. In Wiki Scholars courses, Wiki Education staff lead participants through a six-week course on how to edit Wikipedia in a particular topic area, meeting once per week on Zoom and with outside of class work to research and write articles. These GLAM professionals learned how to improve biographies of women on Wikipedia, particularly those relevant to their local institutions' collections and contexts.

Throughout 2021, we've run three editions of this course, with a fourth happening at the time of submission. In the first three courses, 55 participants edited more than 100 articles, making this a successful opportunity to improve Wikipedia's coverage of American women's history. Participants also contributed to a list building project (similar to the Vicki Funk List) that provides us with names and metadata about notable women for inclusion in Wikidata or Wikipedia to increase the representation of American women from across the country online. In this session, Wiki Education's LiAnna Davis and the Smithsonian's Kelly Doyle will discuss how we collaborated, share more about what the outcomes are for Wikipedia, and describe additional collaborations currently underway to continue improving biographies of American women throughout history.

Academic Peer Review option:


Author name:

LiAnna Davis, Kelly Doyle

E-mail address:,

Wikimedia username:

LiAnna (Wiki Ed); KellyDoyle

Affiliated organization(s):

Wiki Education, Smithsonian

Estimated time:

30 minutes

Special requests:

Need to present on 10/8 or partially pre-recorded if on 10/9 or 10/10

Have you presented on this topic previously? If yes, where/when?:


If your submission is not accepted, would you be open to presenting your topic in another part of the program? (e.g. lightning talk or unconference session)