Catalan Atlas from 1375

One of the great things about Wikipedia is getting to know people with a variety of academic interests. In the geography department, this means working side-by-side with Wikipedians who know the map of Ancient India like the backs of their hands, others who spend hours creating categories about rivers and lakes in Kazakhstan and those who seem determined to write articles about every single nook and cranny in Uruguay.

Although information on all these far-flung and exotic (from the Catalan perspective) places is a huge asset to Wikipedia, knowing our own geopolitical backyard remains as important as ever. While there is a lot of information on the Catalan Wikipedia for some European countries (like Spain, France, Luxembourg and the Netherlands), in many other cases information on European countries is conspicuous for its absence. In an effort to address this issue the European Union Wikiproject was launched on the Catalan Wikipedia.

The aim of the Wikiproject is threefold. First, we seek to create and expand articles on the culture, history, economy and traditions of the EU Member States. Second, we aim to write about the European institutions themselves. Thirdly, we organize and participate in related free knowledge and free data projects. These project often include Wikipedia edit-a-thons on European topics, as well as interviews and photography of European politicians and officials for Commons. Editors were are also sent to take part in the Wiki Loves Parliaments visit to the European Parliament, which brought together several European Wikimedia chapters and was led by Olaf Kosinsky.

Since the Wikiproject began in early 2013, we have created well over 1,000 articles on the EU and its Member States. The Member State on which we focus changes every six months in synch with the rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU. Because it is such a broad project, there is something for everyone, ranging from space exploration geeks and art lovers to foreign press fans and political enthusiasts. This broad appeal has made it one of the most successful Wikiprojects ever on the Catalan Wikipedia, next to the big push to reach first place on the list of Wikipedias by sample of articles.

Our geopolitical background is one gigantic puzzle with lots of holes in it but, step by step, article by article, Catalan Wikipedians are filling in the pieces.

Author of the text: User:Leptictidium – Amical Wikimedia