— Wikimedian —
NameFlorence Devouard (she/her)
Time zoneUTC+1
Contact info

Conflict resolution, Gender gap, Africa, IP Rights, Governance

This user is an administrator on the French Wikipedia. (verify·CA)
This user is an administrator on the French Wikipedia. (verify·CA)
This user is an administrator on the English Wikipedia. (verify·CA)
This user is an administrator on Wikimedia Commons (verify).
This user is an administrator on Meta-Wiki. (verify)
This user is involved in Wikimedia France.
This user is one of the organizers of Wiki Loves Africa.
This user is a Participant of the Wikimedians for Sustainable Development User Group
This user is a member of Wiki Loves Women.
This user is a member of the Wiki Loves Women Focus Group

About me

I was born in Versailles (France). I grew up in Grenoble, and have been living since then in several French cities, as well as Antwerpen in Belgium and Tempe in Arizona.
I am an engineer in Agronomy (ENSAIA and also hold a DEA in Genetics and biotechnologies (INPL). I have spent a while in public research (INRA), working in flower plant genetic improvement, later in applied research, in microbiology, to study the feasibility of heavily polluted soil bioremediation. I spent some time in Tempe University (Arizona), following courses in computer science and civil engineering.
After a break to take care of my first two kids, I joined a small french firm, Quantix Agro, whose activity was related with decision tools, in finances, insurance, agriculture and agri-business. My part was in the agri-business, and I mostly worked to conceive decision-making tools in w:en:sustainable agriculture.
I settled as a freelancer in 2008. In 2017, I co-funded Wiki in Africa, a South Africa based association along with Iolanda Pensa and Isla Haddow-Flood.

As of early 2022, I am 56, and live in Marseille. I work part time at Wiki in Africa as co-lead and I am a Wikimedian in residence at WIPO (Jan 1st 2022 - July 31st 2022).

My affiliations (as of 2023)

Main affiliations
Looser memberships... usergroup I support

Contact me

fr-N Cet utilisateur a pour langue maternelle le français.
en-4 This user has near native speaker knowledge of English.
it-1 Quest'utente può contribuire con un livello elementare in italiano.
de-1 Dieser Benutzer beherrscht Deutsch auf grundlegendem Niveau.

English user page
Page utilisateur en français
linkedin profile

About my work

I have been around since late 2001. I served as the chair of the Board of Trustees of Wikimedia Foundation until July 2008. I co funded Wikimedia France and was its vice-chair for a while.
I discovered Wikipedia in late 2001 and have been an editor since February 2002. I first started editing only the English Wikipedia anonymously, then under the pseudonym Anthere ('What is an anther ?), then joined the French Wikipedia when it had possibly 200 stubs. In English, I mostly focused in editing, while in the French Wikipedia, I also took a lot of time building the project and the community. At that time, all international Wikipedias were very small and not even on the same software than the english one. Most of my edits were in the following areas : agriculture, environment, ecology...I listed them here for a while (then gave up...). I also enjoyed writing on more "touchy" issues, such as the Iraq war, the veil in France or commercial war over GMOs...
In summer 2002, I decided that this project HAD TO BE multilingual... and that I would help make that happen... so I joined THE (only) mailing list (Wikipedia-l at that time) and started editing a no man's land called meta meta in order to help this to happen.
In 2004, I joined the founding mediation commitee on the English Wikipedia and wrote quite a lot of things about mediation and conflict resolution, one of those being w:en:Wikipedia:civility. I also co-authored the Mediawiki Logo with Erik Moeller :)
I am a sysop on meta, en:Wikipedia, fr:Wikipedia and commons, a bureaucrat on Yes, we used to be called sysop, now we are admins...
I have been a steward for over four years.
A big contribution on the project for four years has been as a board member and vice-chair, then chair of Wikimedia Foundation Inc. In itself, it has used a lot of my time, more than I ever gave in 20 years I have been around. A lot of it is invisible, a lot of it is terribly frustrating, but eh ! I resisted 4 years! In october 2004, I also became a founding member of the French association (Wikimedia France). Finally, in october 2006, I became Wikimedia Foundation chair, with the difficult goal of succeeding the foundator of Wikipedia, Jimbo Wales in that role.
On the day I decided not to run again for a 5th year on the board of Wikimedia Foundation, in May 2008, I received a letter from Pdt Sarkozy, who informed me he had proposed me to be made knight in the French National Order of Merit. Soon before Christmas, I was pleased to officially receive the medal from the hands of Mr Besson. In the following year, I went back to editing more (I loved to deal with articles taggued promotionnal), and was very involved on Wikimedia France board again.
Late 2012, I decided it was time to move on and resigned from the board of Wikimedia France (I stay an active member of the chapter !). My focus since then has been diversity (or lack there of...). I co-created projects with Isla Haddow Flood (a woman living in Cap Town, SA) with the explicit goal of getting more African editors and more African-related content onto Wikimedia project.
In the following years, we worked together on

  • Kumusha Takes Wiki (2013-2015), community journalism and capacity building in Ivory Coast and Uganda,
  • Wiki Loves Africa (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022), photographic contest, all Africa
  • Wiki Loves Women (2016 - 2022), a GLAM and capacity building project in Africa
  • WikiFundi (2016, 2018 and 2021), a software solution to create Wikipedia articles offline
  • Wikipack Africa (2016-2017), an action pack including WikiFundi and many resources
  • c:ISA Tool (2019-2021), a microcontribution tool to add structured data on Commons

I also work on other topics such as

In 2017, I co-funded [1], a South Africa based association along with Iolanda Pensa and Isla Haddow-Flood.
More recently, in 2018, I co-founded les sans pagEs Mediterranée with the support of Nattes à chat. Les sans pagEs is an initiative focusing on gender gap in the francophone speaking areas of the wikimedia world.
As of early 2022, aside from my volunteer involvement, I work part time at Wiki in Africa as co-lead and I am a Wikimedian in residence at WIPO (Jan 1st 2022 - July 31st 2022).


Former times

I think of you as a center in a very large collection of inter-connected webs. The webs carry information, and you help direct it where it can create positive changes. Amgine irc 20:41, 25 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Jimmy Wales and I at Wikimania 2006
Jimmy Wales and I at Wikimania 2006

I have been there for so long... 22 years...

From time to time, I go read back some of the stuff I wrote last year, two years ago, three years ago, four years ago...