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Advisory Committee

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Draft Advisory committee document

As a step to nurture Wikimedia India into in fact even bigger roles such that it realizes its mission, beliefs and goals more efficiently, Wikimedia India has decided to setup an advisory committee.

Advisory committee would be a panel of experts with different expertise and connections with the chapter could rely on to get specific advice. However, They are not a "committee" in the usual sense to discuss all issues together and provide consensus.

While the chapter relies on senior and experienced members from the community, it would now also try to enroll people outside Wiki movement. This should be an ongoing process. Growth and strength of WMIN will depend on how many capable members outside our community get interested in us. Community members anyway will always be there to support us.Kindly refer to the policy document Advisory_Committee.pdf.

Rationale

The primary objective of setting up an advisory board at Wikimedia India is to receive support, suggestions, guidance, advice and help in achieving chapter’s objective from distinguished individuals having excelled in their respective fields and mission. The advisory board members would provide a non-binding advice to the Executive Committee Members, Wikimedia India Staff and the community comprising of long list of editors across different language groups. The function of the advisory board would be to offer assistance to the chapter with anything from legal advice to management of finances to carry forward the goals of the chapter. Advisory board members would provide the chapter with new knowledge, development of strategic thinking and possible alternatives based on their expertise from different fields. The advisory board would in turn strengthen the executive committee and wikimedia staff to better execute their work, but does not interfere with either the executive committee or wikimedia india staff regarding the disclosure of confidential documents or forceful execution of their advices.

Mandate

The selection of the advisory board members would be determined by the nature of what is sought and expected by the chapter, as the per the situation in that period . For instance, an individual having expertise in the field of language engineering may be appointed depending upon the chapter’s requirement in dealing a particular problem, at a specified time period.

Focus

The Individuals appointed in the advisory board would have the common objective of promoting chapter’s objective. Promotion of any person or objective with vested interest falls outside the purview of advisory board and the chapter carries a no tolerance policy in this regard.

Size

The advisory board would not have any fixed size , but it is prefered that it consist of 4-8 members.One member would be an individual having an international experience in working with the Wikimedia organisation. The next group of these members would be individuals who were the were Executive members of the Chapter earlier. This group will b instrumental in guiding the Advisory group on how the Chapter works due to their institutional memory. The last group of members would be individuals having experience across four different fields such as legal, information technology, government regulation, administrative experience, etc.

Term of Membership

Advisory board members would be appointed for a specific terms of two years so that it ensures them to actively commit to their respective roles. However, the members may be reappointed immediately again after their completion of the term, repeatedly over-again, based on their expertise as required by the chapter.

Code of Conduct

Wikimedia Chapter Society is a charitable organization whose Advisory Committee members serve the public purposes to which it is dedicated. The members of the Advisory Committee of Wikimedia Chapter, in recognition of the principles for which the Society stands and its purpose, accept a personal obligation to each other, the General Body and the communities they serve, to hereby commit themselves to the highest ethical and moral conduct and agree:

  • To treat all persons with respect and fairly, regardless of factors such as caste, creed, colour, religion, religion, sex, socioeconomic status or sexual orientation.
  • To accept responsibility to make advises consistent with the welfare of the Society and its members and to promptly address factors that might endanger the Society or its members.
  • To reject bribery, corruption and nepotism in all its forms.
  • To avoid real or perceived conflicts of interest, whenever possible, and to make full and fair disclosure of any such real or perceived conflicts to the Executive Committee of the Society.
  • To be honest and realistic in stating claims or estimates based on available data and to respect confidentiality of information, whenever shared.
  • To avoid injuring others, their property, reputation, or employment by false or malicious action.

Discussions

Does Wikimedia India look for people with experience in institutional affairs? 

Yes, the Wikimedia India's prime objective is to seek individuals with individual expertise. Wikimedia India is a growing organisation, hence, the individuals at the advisory committee could provide the precise guidance on how to step under bigger institutional framework

How does the chapter intend to handle down selects if they receive more nominations than they need?

The Executive Committee would prefer experience & exposure as a factor to select few out of the many alternatives (which maybe in excess than required). As per the Chapter's requirement and necessity, the Executive Committee may opt for a member with financial expertise in one-period while a member with technical expertise in another period. This is a subjective affair

Are the people in the advisory committee appointed to deal with a specific challenge?

,Yes, it is. However, the objective is to seek advice on some specific challenge as the case maybe. The role is entirely advisory in nature, hence, the opinion of an advisory committee would not make her/him liable at any instance.

Interested Volunteers

The Wikimedians who are interested in being a part of the advisory committee may sign up here.

Sign Up

Name User Id Exposure to Wiki Projects Professional Expertise
Satdeep Gill Satdeep Gill Since 2009 Community management
Dhaval Vyas Dsvyas Dec 2007 (gu, hi, en, commons, meta, translatewiki, etc.) Sysop on gu.wiki & gu.ws; key force behind gu.wikisource creation, community liaision
Karthik Nadar Karthikndr Since June 2010 ( En Wiki, Meta and Commons) Previously Secretary at Wikimedia India for two years till 2014, GAC member
Yann Forget Yann Since December 2002 (Wikipedia, Commons, Wikisource, Wiktionary, etc.). Former steward. Founding member of Wikimedia France. Cultural exchange, group management and mediation, speaking French, English, Hindi. 10 years in India. Long experience in NGO work in India and France.
Viswanathan Prabhakaran viswaprabha Since at least 2005.
Have worked on Wikipedia, Commons, Wikisource, Wiktionary, Wikidata. (ml, sa, en).
Ardent outreach evangelist of Wikimedia projects.
Former board member of WMIN and also treasurer.
Well learnt about and exposed to the legal, financial and organizational scenario about WMIN