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  • Press Release

Wikimedia Foundation becomes official EQUALS Global Partner

6 June 2018 -- The EQUALS Global Network Partnership is pleased to announce that the Wikimedia Foundation has become the latest official EQUALS Global Partner.

Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation, performing the universal sign of digital gender equality. Credit: Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the non-profit organization that supports Wikipedia, the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects, and its mission of free knowledge for every single person.

Today, many women and girls around the world lack access to online resources – because of a lack of digital skills and/or lack of access.

The EQUALS Global Partnership is a growing network of companies, foundations, academia, United Nations agencies and civil society organizations which come together to bridge the digital gender divide.

By promoting awareness, leveraging resources and knowledge, harnessing the capacities of partners, and supporting real action – EQUALS seeks to achieve digital gender equality and through this, to improve the livelihoods of millions around the world.

EQUALS does this through four main streams of work:

  • ACCESS – Improve women and girls’ digital technology access, connectivity and security

  • SKILLS – Support development of science, technology, engineering and math skills of women and girls

  • LEADERSHIP – Promote women in decision-making roles within the ICT field

Supporting these work areas is the EQUALS Research Group, which is comprised of experts in information gathering and analysis. The group focuses on generating knowledge about the existence, causes and remedies for gender tech inequalities, and on motivating key stakeholder groups, including private sector companies, government departments, regulatory agencies, and academia, to collect and share gender-relevant data.

“Access to information is a foundational right and critical to ensuring that no group or community gets left behind in our changing world,” said Katherine Maher, Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation. “The internet offers the unprecedented opportunity for women and other underserved communities across the world to meaningfully enjoy this right. We do not believe our societies will be truly equitable until all our voices can be heard.”

“This is why the Wikimedia Foundation is committed to supporting a truly global community in which everyone can access and share in all knowledge,” she added. Our partnership with EQUALS is grounded in our shared commitment to create a more open and inclusive internet for all.”

The Wikimedia Foundation currently works to improve access of women and girls to digital knowledge through a number of interventions. For instance, through an ongoing gender-focused grants program, the Wikimedia Foundation helps improve its movement’s understanding of the gender gap and supported communities in designing and implementing creative new projects that are increasing gender diversity across Wikimedia projects.

Whether it's finding creative ways to improve contributor retention, creating and/or improving quality content about and for women, or raising awareness and introducing women to Wikimedia projects, the grants program has generated a much needed conversation on diversity and the gender gap, as well as amplified the importance of investing in community-led gender-leaning initiatives.

On a day to day basis, the Wikimedia Foundation works within a network of Wikimedia affiliates and partners around the world to create a more inclusive movement through initiatives like women-led Wikipedia edit-a-thons, WikiWomen Camps and the Art+Feminism program.


More information is available at:

To become an Official Partner of the EQUALS Global Partnership, contact:

Media Contacts:

Jennifer Ferguson-Mitchell

Senior Communications and Media Relations Officer

ITU Corporate Communications

Kui Kinyanjui

Vice-President of Communications

Wikimedia Foundation

About the Wikimedia Foundation

The Wikimedia Foundation is the nonprofit organization that supports Wikipedia and the other Wikimedia free knowledge projects. Our vision is a world in which every single human can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. We believe that everyone has the potential to contribute something to our shared knowledge, and that everyone should be able to access that knowledge freely. We host Wikipedia and the Wikimedia projects, build software experiences for reading, contributing, and sharing Wikimedia content, support the volunteer communities and partners who make Wikimedia possible, and advocate for policies that enable Wikimedia and free knowledge to thrive. The Wikimedia Foundation is a charitable, not-for-profit organization that relies on donations. We receive financial support from millions of individuals around the world, with an average donation of about $15. We also receive donations through institutional grants and gifts. The Wikimedia Foundation is a United States 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization with offices in San Francisco, California, USA.

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