Best Ideas 2019 features all the nominated entries submitted under ‘Submit your Idea’ category. All the entries consist of innovative solutions or propositions for an enterprise that champions the Sustainable Development Goals. They can be on the conceptual, planning, or start-up stage.
Learning Through Translation Collaboration: Wiki Collaboration Community for Everyone
Explain your idea in details:
It is relatively well known that Wikipedia is like a free online encyclopedia. In today's information revolution, Wikipedia has wielded its enormous power to socially influence a wide range of industries and fields. As long as there is access to the internet, Wikipedia remains the most convenient and comprehensive source of information on a readily available platform, where people can learn a basic concept or a grasp a quick understanding of it. Furthermore, Wikipedia can be a powerful tool to reduce education inequality in the world, especially for the marginalized populations that do not any means of accessing local education or learning resources. The goal of this project, "Learning Through Translation Collaboration: Wiki Collaboration Community for Everyone," is to ensure that users of all languages have equal access to the rich information through Wikipedia to learn and understand more about their surroundings and the unknown. In addition to the increased accessibility to information, if more volunteers were to join the Wikipedia translation team, cultural barriers between countries and even local regions could be tackled through the increase in the flow of information about one another through the online platform.
Expected impact of your idea on sustainable development
Wikipedia has many limitations for those who natively read language that is not English. As of July 1, 2019, Wikipedia has more than 5,878,000 English articles, but only presents 1,063,000 articles in Chinese and 1,529,000 articles in Spanish, even though Chinese and Spanish are two of the most commonly used languaged in the world. The five-fold difference represents a significant obstacle on the breadth and depth of information available to users such as Chinese, negatively affecting the Chinese native speakers' perception of the world beyond them. For example, "Pupusa" is a well-known food in Latin American countries. Although pupusas have a very detailed record in English on Wikipedia, including information on etymology, history, and practices, there is almost no record of such a word in Chinese on the whole internet, except in a culinary article published in 2017 with no description of its origin and history. Although this cultural dish has been in existence for 2000 years, the number of online information in Chinese about pupusa before 2017 remained zero. Consequently, we are promoting the translation of highly used Wikipedia resources to create a community for everyone around the world to learn through collaboration. Volunteers who participate in this project will not only learn relevant knowledge from the translated content but also gain team spirit. Giving priority to the Wikipedia translation project on a larger scale means that different language speakers around the world can have the same opportunity to learn the same materials in the same degree as one another, ultimately helping reduce the inequality and gaps in global educations. It can also deepen the understanding between peoples, promote the collision and integration of many different cultures, and accelerate the process of globalization.
Plans for implementation and sustainability
Funding: Funds can be obtained in two ways: one is to charge $1/month or more to all members who join, and the other is through public donations. Funs will be used for advocacy and hiring language experts. Advocacy: We can build a webpage where users can understand what this organization is, what articles are currently being translated, the current total number of members, official videos, the contact information for participation or donation, and a communication platform built specifically for the members of our organization. Anyone can access and browse the platform, but only members can post messages on this platform. Communication platform/application: We plan to develop an app for inter-member communication and for assigning translation tasks. Each member will have his/her own points based on the application's embedded algorithm. Through the application, everyone will know exactly what his/her position is and what to do. Changes to one's position can also result in changes to the general accessibility to some features. Normal members/translation group members: Anyone can register and become a member through our official website, but in order to join the translation team, they need to reach a certain score in some authoritative language tests, such as Toefl, and pass a set number of small tests on translation to be qualified. All members can learn about the latest developments and activities of the Wikipedia translation organization by SMS or email. Once a member registers, the member will be charged $1 /month as a full institutional operating grant. Members who are not in the translation team can also participate in works relevant to the translation process.
My name is Jihui Tan, and I just became 18 years old this April. I am a rising senior at Hamden Hall Country Day School in the state. I have been studying in the United States for more than two years, and during that time, I have been very fortunate to have recruited a group of 22 other students from Connecticut, Tennessee, New York, and California to form a Wikipedia translation team dedicated to translating English articles, including the one written about pupusas and other articles such as "Center of Contemporary Jewish Documentation" and "James Mackay, 1st Earl of Inchcape". However, the difference between the number of articles in Chinese versus English articles is still more than 4,000,000 on Wikipedia. The few of us that translate articles in our free time when we are not busy studying is not sufficient to lead the changes. We would not even be able to translate 10,000 articles in ten years at this rate. As the founder of this Wikipedia translation team, I want to share this idea with more people, especially high school students and college students who know more than two languages. We hope they can join our team and translate English articles together, or at the very least, use our idea and learn from our team's working process, and form their own translation team.