Sunday, April 23, 2023

Analysis of a Wikipedia article

For professor Gerhard Gries there is a Wikipedia article and as a consequence there was a Wikidata item. Actually there were two; they have been merged. Many articles have been attributed to professor Gries and a Scholia template was added to the article.

Professor Gries has his own lab: the "Gerhard and Regine Gries Lab". There is no article for his wife and, there was no red link. There was no Wikidata item for his wife but there were 59 links indicating her as a missing co-author. She has now 68 articles linked to her as an author or co-author. Regine Gries is now a "woman in red".

The article states in two places that he is a "Fellow of the Entomological Society of America" (2019). It is in the text and it is in a Wikipedia category. Relevant are two additional lists; the website of the Entomological Society of America and the result of a query at Wikidata (shown in a Scholia). All these lists are incomplete, the fellows of 2022 are not yet included on the SoA website; they can be found in a different place. The Scholia has been added to the category article on the English Wikipedia; in effect you will find several "fellows in red". 

Three additional awards are listed, awards that have no category on the article. One is for the "Fellow of the Entomological Society of Canada", its reference may be found here. Another one is for the Nan-Yao Su Award and finally the Gold Medal of the Entomological Society of Canada had to be added to Wikidata. There are always more "award winners in red" to be found or to be added.

Every list, every category in Wikipedia is likely to be incomplete. What we do not know may be relevant. With data on missing articles available in Wikidata, there are more more options to make Wikipedia more inclusive.


Saturday, April 22, 2023

he, she, they/them

One ambition at Wikipedia is to have more articles about women.  The Women in Red project does really well, slowly but surely the balance between articles about males and females is improving. How do we know this: in Wikidata we have a database we can query and it shows over time.

Obviously, both many deserving men and women could get an article in future and particularly many scientists are already known in Wikidata through their publications. So how do we know the gender of these scientists? Because of a name like Emma or Janice it is likely a woman.. Not a precise method particularly for those people who identify themselves in a different way. Google scholar or Twitter often shows a picture and that is not fool proof either. 

The dilemma is in two ways: manual entries are open to errors in the first place. A six percent error rate is to be expected in any edit and anyone is kindly requested to fix what should be improved; Wikidata is rich in alternatives for male/female identifiers. The alternative is that we do not add a likely gender. This results in no awareness of the composition of the co-authors of an author. No awareness of the volume and balance of people who do not have an article yet.

I think that a male author with only male co-authors is problematic in and of itself. Quite often it is just that no attention was given to female co-authors so I often remedy this by giving attention to them. I add them to Wikidata, look for an ORCiD identifier, a Twitter handle a Google scholar profile. The effect is not only apparent for the male author, but it has an effect on all the co-authors for the newly registered author.

The issue I have is, I see no solution for the dilemma of a gender balance in Wikidata. What I do know is that Wikidata is a collaborative project and anyone is kindly requested to make it as good as it can be.

Thanks, GerardM

Saturday, April 08, 2023

@WDScholia, proficiat Prof @DrSarahNull

 On Twitter it was announced that Sarah E. Null will be a professor at USU Watershed Sciences. Hydrology will prove to be a subject of even more importance. This subject has my interest so I checked out her entry in Wikidata.

Identifiers are really important, so I added her Twitter handle and her Google Scholar ID. Her Scholia showed what papers were known and I clicked "improve data" to disambiguate additional publications and link them to her Wikidata entry.

Google Scholar provides information of her publications and I added one paper to Wikidata; "Prolonged and Severe Drought in the Most Dammed Tributaries of the Lower Mekong Basin". It has 8 authors and only four have an ORCiD identifier, three did not have a Wikidata entry. Now they do and their ORCiD identifier makes them unique.

Typically I add several publications when I concentrate on a person. When I stop, I often revisit the "improve data" part of a Scholia to add missing co-authors. Of particular interest are the ones who are missing the most. They have the biggest impact on the "Co-author graph", making it more complex. Jay R. Lund is missing as a co-author ans so is J. R. Lund. Wikidata knew a "Jay Lund" and a "Jay R. Lund", they have been merged and I was then possible to attribute the missing publications for Jay R. Lund. After all this, Prof Null is no longer the only known author on seven papers. :) A bit diapointing so I added one other co-author for now; Marcelo A. Olivares. Others will creep in as more work is done in the future.