Home' The Canberra Times : Chronicle Contents THE CHRONICLE, Tuesday, August 2 2011 - 14
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UC creates Paralympic history
Australia's Louise Sauvage wins gold in a fantastic women's 5000m T54 final at the 2000 Sydney
Picture: Julian Andrews
THE University of Canberra is helping to
create a living history of the Australian
Paralympic movement by crowd sourcing
The university's National Institute of
Sports Studies will use open-access social
media to inspire the creation of articles and
the recording of experiences of athletes
and others involved in the movement.
The project, launched by the Australian
Paralympic Committee, already has about
2000 people from all over the world
working on it.
University of Queensland historian
Murray Phillips will assemble the articles
into a Wiki book and write a hard copy
book of what has been produced.
Director of the UC sports studies
institute, Professor Keith Lyons, said it
was a very exciting project to be involved
in.He said originally the Australian Para-
lympic Committee had wanted to research
for the production of a book only and the
university had suggested otherwise.
"We thought it would be wonderful if it
could be dynamic and be a new book each
day," Professor Lyons said.
"Our hope was we could use the power
of Wikipedia to build up stories of
paralympians in ways that haven't been
He said the idea was to encourage
people to write their own stories about their
place as an athlete, or as someone part of
the movement. Others are being en-
couraged to help curate the book by editing
the submitted stories.
As part of the project the Australian
Paralympic Committee is donating a
significant number of photos in its collec-
tion of more than 35,000 images.
This will be done through Wikimedia
Commons and it will enable high quality
photos to be used to illustrate the history.
Professor Lyons believes this is one of
the first times that a history book has been
created in this way.
He said the institute's staff would use
both their sports history knowledge and
their skills with open access to help
administer the project.
The collection of articles began in July
and is due to officially finish on Decem-
However Professor Lyons hopes the
Wiki book at least will live on after this
time with people continuing to add details
The Australian Paralympic Committee
chief executive Jason Hellwig said the
project would help to ensure the cultural
and sporting significance of the Para-
lympic movement is recognised and under-
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