Today is International Women’s Day, the perfect day to announce the WikiWomen project!

The Frisian educational organization and publisher Afûk, Learning Hub Friesland and the Mercator European Knowledge Center of the Fryske Akademy have received a European subsidy for the three-year project ‘WikiWomen’. In collaboration with secondary schools and Wikipedia from the Basque Country (Spain) and Ireland, Frisian partners are committed to using Wikipedia as a means of teaching digital literacy, social skills and language skills over three years. The grant comes from the ErasmusPlus program of the European Commission, which is earmarked for projects in the fields of education, training, youth and sport.

What we now found out, again and again, is that articles that have a relationship with women are underestimated on Wikipedia” said Mirjam Vellinga, coordinator of the project at the Afûk. “Much less is written about women because the articles written on Wikipedia are mostly written by men and are also very often about men. This is also evident from a study by Erasmus University. Only 18.5 per cent of the biographies on the Dutch Wiki are about women. We want to make students and teachers aware of this as well

During the project, the Frisian partners will collaborate with Wikipedia organizations and schools from Ireland and the Basque Country, where a minority language is spoken. “So it is actually about two emancipation layers: the emancipation of the minority language and the emancipation of the woman,” Vellinga summarizes.
The fact that the project is being carried out in three different countries offers great opportunities for Frisian students and teachers. Pupils and teachers from the three regions come into contact with each other through exchanges during the project. Mirjam Vellinga: “For students, this becomes a kind of ‘Wikithons’, in which they work together on their articles under the guidance of teachers and the people of Wikipedia.”

In March, the foreign partners will come to Leeuwarden for a two-day meeting. The focus will then be on sharing knowledge and experience, but also on the first steps that the international consortium can take in the coming months.

For more information or an explanation, please contact:
Mirjam Vellinga, project leader Afûk., 06-38826991