Spread open knowledge to create new one. Report of the conference “Challenges and Alliances between Libraries and Wikipedia” (Central National Library of Florence, November 10th 2017

Luigi Catalani


The paper reports the contents of the conference “Challenges and Alliances between Libraries and Wikipedia”, hosted on November 10th, 2017 by the Central National Library of Florence, which organized the meeting in collaboration with Wikimedia Italia and the Italian Library Association. The conference confirmed the opportunity for a strong synergy between the library community and the Wikipedian community (represented on this occasion by many members of AIB and Wikimedia Italia) and for a common commitment to the dissemination of knowledge, open access to information and the free reuse of digital resources in the public domain. Starting from the felt need for a regulatory framework on intellectual property that improves free knowledge and the role of cultural institutions, the speakers discussed various forms of interaction with the Wikimedia world, activated by some Italian institutions (BNCF, Municipal Library of Trento, University of Turin) and the peculiar interest that each of the platforms of free knowledge has in the eyes of librarians. Pointed references are to Wikisource (the multilingual digital library, which cotains texts in the public domain), Wikipedia (which already ‘talks’ with the New Soggettario Thesaurus), Wikimedia Commons (where there is an increasing number of digitized resources from libraries) but above all to Wikidata, the free and collaborative knowledge base, enriched in recent times by a large amount of bibliographic data, also thanks to the WikiCite project. This kind of experiments and projects promotes accessibility, research and creative reuse of quality data and resources that libraries produce daily. Finally, the contribution reflects the debate following the talks and the three interesting workshops in the afternoon, a further stimulus to extract the knowledge contained in the bibliographic patrimony and make it available on the web with the contribution of a broad and transversal community.


Wikipedia; Wikidata; Wikisource; Wikimedia Italia; information literacy

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DOI: 10.6092/issn.2283-9364/8456


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