From Strategic Planning


The Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) is the non-profit charitable organization that operates Wikipedia. We are dedicated to encouraging growth, development, and distribution of free, multilingual content, and to providing the full content of these wiki-based projects to the public free of charge. In 2010, the Wikimedia Foundation developed at five-year strategic plan, which includes development of our mobile applications and properties as well as a geographic focus India, Brazil, Russia, Turkey, and Egypt/Arabic speaking countries.

The Wikimedia Foundation currently maintains a mobile gateway ( that allows users to access Wikipedia in different languages through mobile devices. Additionally, WMF also has an official iPhone application which is downloaded ~150,000 times per month. There are also a number of third-party iPhone, iPad, and Android apps, the most popular of which include Wikipanion/Wikipanion Plus, Articles, and Quickpedia. We estimate that X% of Wikipedia users worldwide currently accesss Wikipedia through these mobile pathways.


  • To get a broad understanding of how Wikipedia readers access, read, search, consume, or otherwise use Wikipedia content on mobile devices.
  • To observe and understand Wikipedia editor's current editing practices, with an emphasis on mobile devices but to also including desktop and laptop computers and other devices used in their editing processes.
  • To get insights on cultural and technical ecology of Wikipedia in different geographies and environments, specifically the US, India and Brazil. Specifically to identify notable behaviors; preferences; barriers; mobile + data services, brands, and platforms; and content delivery that can develop our mobile growth.
  • To identify both needs + opportunities for mobile accessibility and development in US, Brazil, and India that can be extended to our entire community and users.
  • To present needs + opportunities and prioritize in collaboration with the mobile business + design + development team.


Existing Wikipedia mobile users, Wikipedia editors, Wikipedia reader, and potential Wikipedia reader, editor, and mobile users.


India, Brazil, United States (Primary) Russia, Turkey, Egypt and Arabic Speaking Countries (Secondary)


  • Manage the process of developing, organizing, and conducting joint quantitative and qualitative research to meet research objectives.
  • Conduct any necessary quantitative market research to work with WMF to narrow down our target geographies, audience demographics, etc for qualitative research. Including but not limited to types of mobile access (gateway, apps, wap) and devices, geographic distribution in target geographies, language variation, use of technology, use of Wikipedia, etc.
  • Create recruiting quotas for each geographic region.
  • Develop recruiting screener to recruit subjects from these geographic regions and audience demographics. Recruiting from Wikipedia website is a possibility.
  • Conduct secondary screening with viable candidates for inteviews compatibility and any secondary recruitment criteria. Assemble representative sample of subjects.
  • Diary Studies, Field Studies, Interivew. Schedule and conduct 6-8 face-to-face interviews in each target location with a minimum of 4 locations. Or as recommended from other research. One or two members of our staff to accompany.
  • Note-taking and video recordings of interviews. Translation when required.
  • Analysis and synthesis of research into recommendation reports.


  • Report containing the analysis and recommendations on target geographies and audience demographics - including Wikipedia usage patterns, language distribution, market and mobile platform trends, etc.
  • Report of recommendations for the Wikimedia Foundation’s mobile strategy for each of the target geographies, cultures, phone types, or any other discovered categorization.
  • Executive report on recommendations for the Wikimedia Foundation’s mobile strategy overall.
  • Raw notes and videos from all interviews


The work is expected to commence on March 1, 2010 for a duration of 2.5 months.


The contractor will be paid in US$. The contractor will need to cover all legally required deductions, taxes and benefits out of this amount. Approved out-of-pocket expenses may be invoiced for reimbursement.

In the event that either party become dissatisfied with the progress of the contract, and both parties have taken all reasonable steps to resolve or improve the situation without mutual satisfaction, this agreement can be terminated by either party with 30 days’ written notice. These 30 days will be used for transition planning, hand-off of all work to date, and necessary communication to all constituents. Wikimedia’s fee obligation will be terminated at the ed of the 30 days.


  • Quotes and Proposals should be submitted no later than Monday February 21st, 2011
  • For Individuals, Quotes and Proposals should be submitted with a letter and resume that indicates their qualifications to fulfill the requirements of the RFP
  • For Firms, Quotes and Proposals should be submitted with portfolio link of relevant work or case studies.
  • .PDF and .ODT is preferred, but all formats will be accepted.


  • Parul Vora, UX Researcher + Design Strategist, pvora [at]
  • Mani Pande, Global Development Senior Research Analyst, mpande [at]