A wikimedian in residence is working with the digital library of BEIC, Biblioteca Europea di Informazione e Cultura in Milan. During the collaboration in the next four months, Federico Leva (also known as Nemo) will help BEIC create sinergies between its collections and Wikimedia projects, as well as teach and assist library's staff to then continue to work in this direction autonomously.
BEIC focuses on producing top quality scans and metadata for a careful selection of works and authors considered (by panels of university experts) the most important of the last three millennia in the respective fields of science and humanities. Its currently available collections range from historical archives of Italian writer and patriot Carlo Cattaneo to digitised scientific and technical books from 16th to 18th century (e.g. the Biblioteca idraulica); from modern multimedial materials such as photographs (e.g. the Paolo Monti archive) to textual archives (e.g. the archive of the writer Giuseppe Pontiggia) and many others.
Federico Leva, being the first WIR of Italy contracted by Wikimedia Italia rather than by the target institution, is also fostering the creation of a stable, easily reusable and community-approved infrastructure for future WIRs in Italian language projects. While preparing for the work, he also updated the Wikipedian in Residence central registry.
The Lyon Declaration On Access to Information and Development
«Increased access to information and knowledge, underpinned by universal literacy, is an essential pillar of sustainable development. Greater availability of quality information and data and the involvement of communities in its creation will provide a fuller, more transparent allocation of resources.»
Wikimedia Italia signed the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) Lyon Declaration, an advocacy document focused on the fundamental role of access to information and knowledge in sustainable development and «long-term socio-economic prosperity and well-being of people everywhere». The document is aimed to ask The United Nations to consider this issue in their new development agenda to succeed the Millennium Development Goals. The list of signatories includes worldwide national library associations, national libraries of many countries, professional organizations, single libraries and no profit organizations.
Meeting with librarians in Florence
Andrea Zanni and Luca Martinelli, respectively President and Secretary of Wikimedia Italia, have met with several senior librarians in Florence on September 27, to discuss a pilot project involving Wikibase. The idea is to test the usage of the MediaWiki extension to store and manage libraries data and to connect those data to Wikidata and the related WMF projects. The meeting allowed to define the main characteristics of the project, which will enter active sperimentation in mid-October.
EAGLE 2014 International Conference
Luca Martinelli and Cristian Consonni, respectively Secretary and Treasurer of Wikimedia Italia, participated as speakers at the EAGLE 2014 International Conference, held in Paris, France from September 29 to October 1.
The former was invited to discuss the Eagle MediaWiki project, a database of Latin and Ancient Greek inscriptions run by a MediaWiki and Wikibase instance - the first known usage of the Wikibase extension outside the WMF perimeter. The presentation, with a brief explanation and data about the project, is available here (English).
The latter discussed the ArcheoWiki project (Italian), aimed at involving all people (with a particular focus on teenagers, elders and people with disabilities) new to the archaeological field in the least-known Lombardy archaeological heritage. The project involved six museums and cultural institutions in Lombardy, and produced a certain number of articles created or modified on Wikipedia (see related category on Italin Wikipedia) and 800+ free images for Wikimedia Commons (see Category:Archeowiki images and Category:WikiGite Archeowiki images).