Workgroup:Code of Conduct/1st Draft/beta

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This page is for staging possible changes to the 1st draft Code of Conduct. Use the issue tracker to comment on wording etc..

Farm-Fresh information.png NB NOT OFFICIAL: 1st Draft Beta 110405.
This version started with the suggested changes on the Issue Tracker as of now - Kim Tucker 23:03, 5 April 2011 (UTC).

Status of this version: obsolete (the first draft has absorbed much of this and moved on).


WikiEducator is an evolving community engaged in collaborative planning and development of open educational resources.
Internally and externally, we are always open to collaboration and, wherever possible, work closely with existing projects and others in the open education community to exchange, improve and build upon previous work.
The Code of Conduct presents principles for positive and productive collaboration among community members, and is rooted in WikiEducator's core values:
diversity, freedom, innovation, transparency, equality, inclusivity, empowerment, human dignity, wellbeing and sustainability.[1]
The principles are applicable in any WikiEducator forum, mailing list, wiki, web site, IRC channel, public meeting and private correspondence. WikiEducator workgroups and other structures are ultimately accountable to the WikiEducator Community Council who will arbitrate in any dispute over the conduct of a member of the community in accordance with our code of conduct, policies and procedures.

Be mindful of the community and interdependencies

While WikiEducator may be used freely and effectively by individuals working in isolation, its strength lies in its support for collaboration in the production and sharing of learning resources.
When editing pages or expressing ideas or opinions on WikiEducator fora, or when modifying code or adding features (as a system administrator), or when making decisions, be mindful of the wide and diverse community of educators, learners and other interested and affected parties.

Be collaborative

Collaboration is central to WikiEducator and to the wider open education community. Collaboration streamlines the production of learning resources, and improves the quality of our work.
Whatever the scale of the project or activity, be open to collaborators from the outset and continue with transparency, inclusivity and continuous communication of intentions and progress. Strive for consensus, and follow due process.

Be respectful

Everyone can make a valuable contribution to WikiEducator. We share our differing viewpoints and opinions freely, in a professional manner, while striving for consensus in decision making and for enhanced quality of the learning resources we produce. We may have very different perspectives and may not always agree, but at all times maintain a tone of mutual respect and acknowledge each others' contributions appropriately.

Help each other

Nobody knows everything, and nobody is expected to be perfect in the WikiEducator community. Asking questions avoids many problems down the road, and so questions are encouraged. Those who are asked (or who discover open) questions should be responsive and helpful.

Assume good faith

WikiEducator welcomes and encourages newcomers and inexperienced participants who may be unfamiliar with the emergent culture and wiki environment. Occasionally, misplaced edits or comments with unintended implications arise. Most people mean well and contribute with a view to enhancing the resources on WikiEducator. In general, assume good faith unless there is clear evidence of malice.

When disagreements arise, consult others

Disagreements are common in any collaborative endeavour and the WikiEducator community is no exception. Disagreements may concern pedagogical, social, technical and policy issues. It is important that we resolve disagreements and differing views constructively and with the help of the community and community processes. We have several workgroups, of varying degrees of formality, addressing important issues and the WikiEducator Community Council which help to decide the right course for WikiEducator. When our goals differ dramatically, we encourage the creation of alternative sets of resources, or derivative works, with clear cross-referencing, so that the community can peruse the various perspectives, offer new ideas and participate in the discussion.


The democratically established WikiEducator Community Council is tasked with leading the initiative. However, leadership emerges at multiple levels within the community and our aim is to foster an environment which encourages leadership and innovation.
The nature of WikiEducator enables the emergence of a variety of different types of leaders. The formally elected Council members, for example, have been recognised as leaders and hold a position for a fixed period with a possibility of being re-elected. Within the multitude of projects and workgroups on WikiEducator are formal and informal leaders showing the way within their respective spheres of influence. Some leaders stay with a project for years, while others may pop up for a short while with new insights which change the direction of an initiative. In all cases, there are commonalities in the ways in which leaders behave. The following suggest some of these as a guide to recognising and being a leader.

Lead by example

The Code of Conduct does not only apply to leaders, it applies to leaders more. Leaders show more patience, more respect, more civility than other members of the WikiEducator community, and epitomise this Code of Conduct. Their contributions are sustained, significant, reliable and recognised by their teams, collaborators and the broader open education community.

Respect and advance WikiEducator processes and principles

Leaders take care to act in accordance with WikiEducator governance principles and structures, and work within the WikiEducator system to change them if required.

Inspire and facilitate collaborative action

Leaders know when to ask for help, when to step back and when to take action. Leaders know when not to make a decision but to delegate it to their teams and other collaborators. Leaders have a talent for sharing the work load and inspiring collaborative action in accordance with this code of conduct. Effective leadership results in getting the right things done in the right way, personal growth and empowerment among participants, synergies and collective effectiveness.

Credit the contributors

Leaders are highly appreciative of the work of participants. While WikiEducator leaders are frequently more prominent in the open education space, they use their visibility to highlight the great work of their team members and other contributors.

Manage conflicts of interest

A leader notices when they are conflicted and delegates decisions to others on their team or to other teams or governing councils. When in doubt, leaders publicly ask for a second opinion. They realize that perceived conflicts of interest are as important as real conflicts of interest and are cognizant of perceptions; they understand that their actions are as tainted by perceived conflicts as by real ones.

Keep the personal personal

No team is an extension of its leader's personality and leaders' personal feelings and desires may diverge from the interest of their teams. When acting in their capacity as leaders, leaders should not ignore their own beliefs, feelings, and principles but must hold the interests of their team and the WikiEducator community above their own convictions. Leaders make difficult choices but are careful to act in the best interests of their communities. They work with established processes and delegate decisions to others when necessary to serve those broader interests.

Step down gracefully

Members of every project come and go and WikiEducator is no different. When somebody leaves or disengages from the project, in whole or in part, we ask that they do so in a way that minimises disruption to the project. This means they should tell people they are leaving and take the proper steps to ensure that others can pick up where they left off.


We pride ourselves on building a productive, happy and agile community that can welcome new ideas in the exciting field of open education, and foster collaboration among groups with overlapping needs, interests and goals in line with the core values of the project.

The WikiEducator code of conduct is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 licence. You may re-use it for your own project, and modify it as you wish, just please allow others to use your modifications and give credit to the WikiEducator Project and to the Ubuntu project on whose code of conduct this document is based.


  1. See Open Community Governance Policy.