Diversity and Quality

One of the central questions in our project Wikipedia-Diversity is the question about the relationship between diversity and quality. As far as diversity is concerned we mean the socio-demographic diversity of Wikipedia editors. In the first year of the project in 2013 we are focusing on gender-diversity and will be looking at other types of socio-demographic diversity, e.g. age and cultural background as a follow-up. As far as quality is concerned we mean the quality of the process of knowledge production and the quality of the product of knowledge production in the Wikipedia.

We have recently conducted a number of interviews with Wikipedia editors asking them a number of questions, including:
“Do you think that the low number of female editors in Wikipedia (approx. 10%) has an effect on the quality of Wikipedia? What is the evidence?”

Some of the key effects of socio-demographic named by the interviewees were:

  • The diversity of topics and articles covered by Wikipedia
  • The diversity of perspectives (including the perspectives on what is relevant)
  • The quality of cooperation (especially on discussion sites)

Today, at Open Sunday organised by Wikipedia Deutschland, we held a workshop as a follow-up to these interviews.

Here is the presentation from workshop we did today at Wikimedia Deutschland/Open Sunday:

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