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WikiLit: A literature review of scholarly research on Wikipedia


Please contact us at wikilit - at -

License and attribution: How to distribute or re-use this data

Site license


Okoli, Chitu, Mehdi, Mohamad, Mesgari, Mostafa, Nielsen, Finn Årup and Lanamäki, Arto, *** (March 13, 2012). Available at SSRN:

However, before you officially publish anything where you cite the working paper, please check here and on SSRN to see if we have published the final version yet, so that you can cite that.

  • We have borrowed extensively from the forms, templates, semantic links, navigation structure and other presentation content from emijrp's WikiPapers. Many of the fields of the template in WikiLit follows the convention of WikiPapers.

Key details about this literature review

  • We describe the methodology in detail in a working paper; it is currently very rough, but should be updated by May 2012.
  • We include only research about Wikipedia, not about any other wiki or any other Wikimedia Foundation project.
  • We focused mainly on peer-reviewed journal articles (over 300) and PhD dissertations (over 25), and have systematically sought to include these. It is a huge project, and we had to draw a limit to what we would mainly focus on.
  • We have identified over 1,500 conference papers which we list with their abstracts. However, in our detailed analysis we have included only 70 or so of the most highly-cited conference papers. Because of our limited time and resources, unfortunately we were unable to analyze more than that in detail. However, we can certainly do detailed analysis of any important conference papers that we left out--please point them out!
  • We do not include any items published after June 2011, after which the Wikimedia Research Newsletter was formally inaugurated; we're letting them pick up from where we stop.
  • We have submitted a presentation proposal for Wikimania 2012.

Request for help

Please help us verify the accuracy of our data extraction so far. Practically, if you could take a look at your own publications and the publications you know well, that would be great. It's an open wiki, so please make any corrections directly, even anonymously. (However, if you want us to acknowledge your contributions, please create a user account and identify yourself on your user page.) In particular, please help us with the following:

  • Please correct any inaccuracies you see, or e-mail us at wikilit - at - to notify us of them.
  • Please point out any peer-reviewed journal articles or PhD dissertations we have missed that were published before July 2011; we will certainly add these.
  • Please point out any other scholarly studies (especially conference articles and significant non-peer-reviewed work) that you feel should definitely be analyzed in detail. Although we have listed 1,500 conference papers, our limited time and resources only permits us to analyze a fraction of them in detail. So, please help us highlight the most important ones that we have not analyzed in detail, with a brief explanation of why they are particularly important.
  • Please add any scholarly studies about Wikipedia that we have left out! Our restrictions in what we include are purely pragmatic due to time and resource limitations. If you want to add anything that we say that we don't have the time to do ourselves, please feel free to do so! Please add your own research and those of others that you know well. However, if you add a new article, please be sure to ***fill all input fields***, since we will generally need complete data for our final analysis.
  • Please suggest any data analysis or visualizations you would like to see as we synthesize and present the data.
  • Please give any other feedback or suggestions that can help us make this dataset more useful to researchers!

The data is publicly available (it is dual-licensed CC-BY-SA and ODbL, except for copyrighted abstracts), but this is a beta release and there are probably a lot of errors. We hope to have a stable and very clean dataset within a couple months, both from community help and from our own internal quality control processes; we'll make another announcement when we feel it has reached "featured" quality. In particular, please wait a bit before exporting the data to other research collection websites and wikis until it is in a cleaner state; by then, we'll help make it available in as many export formats as practical. No later than May 31, 2012, we hope that this dataset will have attained exportable quality. (If this notice has not been updated by that date, then please contact us at wikilit - at - to ask for the current status.)

How can I edit the pages about existing articles and researchers?

Please help by filling missing fields in pages:

  • Navigate to any article or researcher
  • Click the Edit with form link at the top of the page
  • For articles,
    • Basic properties: Basic bibliometric data for the article
    • Identifiers: Links and bibliometric identifiers
    • Select as many topics from the category tree that are relevant for the article
    • Annotation: Relevant data related to the study that is pertinent to researchers. We need the most help here!
    • Additional info: Other information for the article, mainly related to related media

How can I create a new page for a new article or researcher?

For adding new content to WikiLit, you can use the following forms:

How to browse this site

  • Browse articles by research topics (click [+] to expand the subcategories):

  • Browse articles
By title
By year of publication
  • Browse researchers
By name
By country


  Author(s) Year Published in Topic(s) Domain(s)
'Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia' as a role model? Lessons for open innovation from an exploratory examination of the supposedly democratic-anarchic nature of Wikipedia Gordon Müller-Seitz
Guido Reger
2010 International Journal of Technology Management Contributor motivation
Policies and governance
Social order
Information systems
A 'resource review' of Wikipedia Cormac Lawler 2006 Counselling & Psychotherapy Research Miscellaneous topics Information systems
A Persian web page classifier applying a combination of content-based and context-based features Mojgan Farhoodi
Alireza Yari
Maryam Mahmoudi
2009 International Journal of Information Studies Text classification Computer science
A Wikipedia literature review Owen S. Martin 2010 ArXiv Literature review Mathematics
A Wikipedia matching approach to contextual advertising Alexander N. Pak
Chin-Wan Chung
2010 World Wide Web Other information retrieval topics Computer science
A comparison of World Wide Web resources for identifying medical information Pamela T. Johnson
Jennifer K. Chen
John Eng
Martin A. Makary
Elliot K. Fishman
2008 Academic Radiology Health information source
Ranking and popularity
A comparison of privacy issues in collaborative workspaces and social networks Martin Pekárek
Stefanie Pötzsch
2009 Identity in the Information Society Ethics
Policies and governance
Philosophy and ethics
Computer science
Information systems
A content-driven reputation system for the Wikipedia B. Thomas Adler
Luca de Alfaro
2007 WWW '07 Proceedings of the 16th international conference on World Wide Web Reputation systems Computer science
A cultural and political economy of Web 2.0 Robert W. Gehl 2010 George Mason University Culture and values of Wikipedia
Other collaboration topics
Policies and governance
Commercial aspects
Political science
A data-driven sketch of Wikipedia editors Robert West
Ingmar Weber
Carlos Castillo
2012 WWW (Posters) Cultural and linguistic effects on participation Computer science
A five-year study of on-campus Internet use by undergraduate biomedical students Terry Judd
Gregor Kennedy
2010 Computers and Education Domain-specific student readership Health
A framework for information quality assessment Besiki Stvilia
Les Gasser
Michael B. Twidale
Linda C. Smith
2007 Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology Comprehensiveness
Featured articles
Readability and style
Information science
Library science
A knowledge-based search engine powered by Wikipedia David N. Milne
Ian H. Witten
David M. Nichols
2007 CIKM '07 Proceedings of the sixteenth ACM conference on Conference on information and knowledge management Query processing Computer science
A method for category similarity calculation in wikis Cheong-Iao Pang
Robert P. Biuk-Aghai
2010 Proceedings of the 6th International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration (WikiSym '10)
A method for measuring co-authorship relationships in MediaWiki Libby Veng-Sam Tang
Robert P. Biuk-Aghai
Simon Fong
2008 Proceedings of the 4th International Symposium on Wikis (WikiSym '08)
A multimethod study of information quality in wiki collaboration Gerald C. Kane 2011 ACM Transactions on Management Information Systems Antecedents of quality
Featured articles
Quality improvement processes
Computational estimation of trustworthiness
Information systems
A negative category based approach for Wikipedia document classification Meenakshi Sundaram Murugeshan
K. Lakshmi
Saswati Mukherjee
2010 International Journal of Knowledge Engineering and Data Mining Text classification Computer science
A new year, a new Internet Michael Castelluccio 2008 Strategic Finance Wikipedia as a system Computer science
A practical approach to language complexity: a Wikipedia case study Taha Yasseri
András Kornai
János Kertész
2012 PLoS ONE
A request for help to improve the coverage of the NHS and UK healthcare issues on Wikipedia Rod Ward 2006 Health Information on the Internet Health information source Health
A semantic approach for question classification using WordNet and Wikipedia Santosh Kumar Ray
Shailendra Singh
B.P. Joshi
2010 Pattern Recognition Letters Text classification Computer science
A systemic and cognitive view on collaborative knowledge building with wikis Ulrike Cress
Joachim Kimmerle
2008 International Journal of Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning Deliberative collaboration Knowledge management
A tale of two tasks: editing in the era of digital literacies Kelly Chandler-Olcott 2009 Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy Student contribution
Student information literacy
A utility for estimating the relative contributions of wiki authors Ofer Arazy
Eleni Stroulia
2009 Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on Weblogs and Social Media (ICWSM’09) Collaboration software Computer science
Academics and Wikipedia: reframing Web 2.0 as a disruptor of traditional academic power-knowledge arrangements Henk Eijkman 2010 Campus-Wide Information Systems Epistemology
Knowledge source for scholars and librarians
Reader perceptions of credibility
Cross-domain student readership
Accelerating networks David M. D. Smith
Jukka-Pekka Onnela
Neil F. Johnson
2007 New Journal of Physics Size of Wikipedia Information systems
Access, claims and quality on the Internet - future challenges Kim H. Veltman 2005 Progress in Informatics Epistemology
Reader perceptions of credibility
Information systems
Accuracy estimate and optimization techniques for SimRank computation Dmitry Lizorkin
Pavel Velikhov
Maxim Grinev
Denis Turdakov
2010 VLDB Journal Ranking and clustering systems Computer science
Action research as a congruent methodology for understanding wikis: the case of Wikiversity Cormac Lawler 2008 Journal of Interactive Media in Education Research platform Education
Adaptive indexing for content-based search in P2P systems Aoying Zhou
Rong Zhang
Weining Qian
Quang Hieu Vu
Tianming Hu
2008 Data and Knowledge Engineering Other information retrieval topics Computer science
Addressing gaps in knowledge while reading Christopher Jordan
Carolyn Watters
2009 Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology Reading support Computer science
Adhocratic governance in the Internet age: a case of Wikipedia Piotr Konieczny 2010 Journal of Information Technology & Politics Policies and governance Business
An Aesthetic for Deliberating Online: Thinking Through “Universal Pragmatics” and “Dialogism” with Reference to Wikipedia Nicholas Cimini
Jennifer Burr
2012 The Information Society: An International Journal Epistemology
Deliberative collaboration
Philosophy and ethics
Information systems
An activity theoretic model for information quality change Besiki Stvilia
Les Gasser
2008 First Monday Featured articles Information systems
An analysis of Wikipedia Mohammad M. Rahman 2008 JITTA : Journal of Information Technology Theory and Application Antecedents of quality
Size of Wikipedia
Commercial aspects
Information systems
An analysis of open content systems Ofer Arazy
Raymond Patterson
2005 Proceeding of the 15th Workshop on Information Technologies & Systems (WITS’05)
An analysis of the delayed response to hurricane Katrina through the lens of knowledge management Alton Y. K. Chua
Selcan Kaynak
Schubert S. B. Foo
2007 Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology News source Knowledge management
An analysis of topical coverage of Wikipedia Alexander Halavais
Derek Lackaff
2008 Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication Comprehensiveness Information systems
An axiomatic approach for result diversification Sreenivas Gollapudi
Aneesh Sharma
2009 WWW '09 Proceedings of the 18th international conference on World wide web Ranking and clustering systems Computer science
An empirical examination of Wikipedia's credibility Thomas Chesney 2006 First Monday Reliability Information systems
An empirical study of the effects of NLP components on geographic IR performance Nicola Stokes
Yi Li
Alistair Moffat
Jiawen Rong
2008 International Journal of Geographical Information Science Geographic information retrieval Computer science
An evaluation of medical knowledge contained in Wikipedia and its use in the LOINC database Jeff Friedlin
Clement J McDonald
2010 Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association Other information retrieval topics Computer science
An exploration on on-line mass collaboration: focusing on its motivation structure Jae Kyung Ha
Yong-Hak Kim
2009 International Journal of Social Sciences Contributor motivation
Other collaboration topics
An inside view: credibility in Wikipedia from the perspective of editors Helena Francke
Olof Sundin
2010 Information Research Contributor perceptions of credibility Library science
Analysis of community structure in Wikipedia Dmitry Lizorkin
Olena Medelyan
Maria Grineva
2009 18th int. conf. on World Wide Web (WWW)
Analyzing and visualizing the semantic coverage of Wikipedia and its authors Todd Holloway
Miran Božičević
Katy Börner
2007 Complexity Semantic relatedness Information systems
Analyzing the creative editing behavior of Wikipedia editors: through dynamic social network analysis Takashi Iba
Keiichi Nemoto
Bernd Peters
Peter A. Gloor
2010 Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences Social order Information systems
Applications of semantic web methodologies and techniques to social networks and social websites Sheila Kinsella
John G. Breslin
Alexandre Passant
Stefan Decker
2008 Reasoning Web Technical infrastructure Information systems
Are web-based informational queries changing? Chadwyn Tann
Mark Sanderson
2009 Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology Cross-domain student readership Computer science
Arguably the greatest: sport fans and communities at work on Wikipedia Meghan M. Ferriter 2009 Sociology of Sport Journal Contributor engagement Information systems
… further results