March 14 — 15, 2013

Featuring Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies, Cato Institute.

Interested in the bills making their way through Congress?

Think they should be covered well in Wikipedia?

Well, let’s do something about it!

On Thursday and Friday, March 14th and 15th, we are hosting a conference here at the Cato Institute to explore ways of using legislative data to enhance Wikipedia.

Our project to produce enhanced XML markup of federal legislation is well under way, and we hope to use this data to make more information available to the public about how bills affect existing law, federal agencies, and spending, for example.

What better way to spread knowledge about federal public policy than by supporting the growth of Wikipedia content?

Thursday’s session is for all comers. Starting at 2:30 p.m., we will familiarize ourselves with Wikipedia editing and policy, and at 5:30 p.m. we’ll have a Sunshine Week reception. (You don’t need to attend in the afternoon to come to the reception. Register now!)

On Friday, we’ll convene experts in government transparency, in Wikipedia editorial processes and decisions, and in MediaWiki technology to think things through and plot a course.

Do you have relevant interests and experience? Please apply! Applications for participation in the Friday session are due Friday, March 1.


Thursday, March 14,
2:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.
Intro to Wikipedia and open edit‐​a‐​thon
Thursday, March 14,
5:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.
Sunshine Week reception & networking event
Friday, March 15,
9:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
All day planning meeting (approved application required)

Register and apply for Friday’s session here.

Cato has a very limited budget to assist with travel. If you are not based in Washington D.C., you will likely need to cover your own travel to participate; but Wikipedia/​Wikimedia community members may be eligible for a Wikimedia Participation Grant. Act fast if you want to pursue travel funding through this program; it’s up to you to submit a separate application for funding, which would be fulfilled by Wikimedia, not Cato.

We hope to foster productive interaction between Washington, D.C.‘s transparency community and Wikipedians–and to properly celebrate Sunshine Week!