Broadening African Self-Representation on Wikipedia: A Field Experiment

  1. Eric Pennington
  2. Florence Devouard

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Category: Project

Description: How can efforts aimed at at broadening African self-representation on Wikipedia increase participation? Wiki Loves Africa (WLA) is a Wikipedia community project that hosts an annual photo competition focused on increasing African contributions to imagery that represents African people, places, and culture. In a field experiment with previous 5,905 participants, we randomly assigned past contributors to receive a recruitment message and observed their contributions to the 2020 competition. On average, receiving a message caused a 1.2 percentage point increase in competition entrants (p=0.002). Among those who contributed to the contest in 2019, there was an increase of 2.7 percentage points compared to the control group (p=0.029). We conclude with suggestions for further research aimed at increasing African self-representation on Wikipedia.


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