York Museums Trust has appointed its first Wikimedian in Residence, becoming the latest cultural institution to strike up a partnership with Wikimedia UK.
Pat Hadley, from York, will help champion the use of Wikipedia – and other Wikimedia projects like the media repository Wikimedia Commons – across the Trust and beyond. Pat’s role will see him become Wikimedian in Residence for two days a week for a six month period.
Martin Fell, digital team leader at YMT, said: “We are delighted that Pat has accepted this new role. An archaeologist for the last decade who has been a regular contributor to Wikipedia for the last two years, he brings with him the ideal mix of a passion for history and an understanding of the huge potential of sharing knowledge online.”
Pat will work with YMT’s Digital Team, curators, volunteers, the Wikimedia community and Wikimedia UK to facilitate the release of more of the Trust’s collections onto Wikimedia Commons under open licenses. He will also help develop an open digital strategy for the Trust that will include a revamp of licensing of digital assets and continued engagement with the Wikimedia community.
To begin with Pat will work with the Trust’s Tempest Anderson collection which includes some 5,000 glass slides as well as numerous significant books and scientific papers. Topics covered by the collection include – but are not limited to – early mountaineering in Europe, volcanology, social history, geology, local history, travel, photography, the magic lantern, colonialism, shipping and medicine. The images alone have the potential to improve a wide range of Wikipedia articles and will also be of great value to Wikipedians editing in other languages.
Pat will also be looking at institutional engagement with Wikimedia projects and will build on the very successful residencies at other institutions such as the British Museum, the British Library, Tyne and Wear Archives & Museums and the Natural History Museum.
The post is supported by a grant from Wikimedia UK.