On Tue, Nov 29, 2011 at 1:10 PM, Barry Newstead <bnewst...@wikimedia.org>wrote:

> On Mon, Nov 28, 2011 at 9:16 AM, Theo10011 <de10...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> I really didn't read the entire thread to have a lot of comments, I just
>> have one point I noticed that I wanted to ask - Why is Tory Read conducting
>> the "evaluative study"?
>>
>> As I recall, her only exposure to India and Wikipedia before this was the
>> research project. And even that had nothing to do with the Education
>> program directly. Is there a reason why she's leading the study?
>>
>> It seems like the same pattern of avoiding knowledgeable
>> and experienced members of the community to focus on the "outside
>> perspective". I thought the only lesson that the team did take away was,
>> you can't do in India what the global education team and Frank did in the
>> US. They don't scale and you need local solutions.
>>
>> I'm pretty sure Ms. Read is a competent researcher and would do a good
>> job but I don't see how Ms. Read's expertise or exposure to India and the
>> Education program would make this process any different from the pattern
>> that brought IEP here. Talking to the staff in SF, or spending a day in
>> Delhi or Pune is not going to give a clear picture at all.
>>
>
> Tory is indeed a competent researcher who built a solid understanding of
> the community and how things work in Wikimedia during her engagement with
> us in the India Chronicles.  I selected her for this assignment because she
> has a good working knowledge of our general situation from her work on the
> India Chronicles, she has the skills to interview a good cross-section of
> those involved (WP editors, students, profs, Campus Ambassadors, online
> ambassadors, staff, others), she can look at the issue with fresh eyes and
> help synthesize learning and recommendations for changes, she will get this
> done in a timely fashion while memories are still fresh (which is really
> important).
>

So, In summary, her only exposure to India and the community *was* the
Research project that was undertaken for WMF earlier this year. I haven't
had the chance to see the India Chronicles, but I can take your word for
it. My point was, "fresh eyes" were what brought us here, but that notion
doesn't seem to be registering with anyone yet. You are trying to justify
that a single visit for a research project on behalf of WMF qualifies
someone about a culture, community and a country. I thought you needed more
local Indian perspective on this, how is this a start?


> She is doing a combination of Skype, email and in-person interviews...and
> is in Pune this week actually. I'm confident that her work will be valuable
> to all of us and it will be shared in its entirety with the community.  It
> won't be the only work on this. Both the India team and the Global
> Education Program team are committed to doing more joint problem-solving on
> future changes to the program with those interested in engaging with us.
>

Again, as I said, mostly remote work, and a couple of days in Pune and
Delhi. Honestly, I'm not sure anyone currently on the WMF India staff has a
good view of this, even after engaging directly for several months. I can't
seem to understand what a researcher/consultant who wasn't as engaged as
the staff can come up with.

Anyway, It was just my opinion. I made my concerns known before the IEP was
undertaken, I guess you guys have this.

Regards
Theo
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