OSM India Mapper of the Month

Back in 2015, OpenStreetMap Belgium started a Mapper of the Month project, to showcase the work that mappers and members of the community were doing. I think it would be great for OpenStreetMap India to start a similar project, to highlight what members of our community are doing, since that can often go unnoticed.

There’s a lot that needs to be decided and done to get this started - website, mapper nomination/selection procedure (community vote?), mode of interview/questions (common question template?), frequency (monthly?)

I’d love to hear any opinions about starting such an OpenStreetMap India Mapper of the Month series. And if anyone thinks it’s a good idea, suggestions on how it should be structured (or not structured) are welcome.

  1. I was planning to build a mapper recognition thing anyway, so it will work well with this.
  2. Can also add in some sort of a prize (nothing much) + will feature their work on socials and podcast.
  3. But I can only help in facilitating this to a certain extent, would be helpful if there was at least 1 other person involved to support.

Here are the parts I can do on my own : Website with a nomination/selection system and the prize + social feature. Also building out the zaps for reminders to select/nominate etc should be easy to do.

Here’s where I’ll need help : Figuring out what the system for selection is, organizing the voting/nomination etc, working out the frequency + question templates.

Can support prizes for upto 6 months personally, and can seek out a grant for 6 more. So can do a 12 month thing. Helps me build a good audience for the podcast as well, and it’s great to showcase the mappers as well.

I support the idea of starting OpenStreetMap India specific activities for community outreach and engagement. Mapper of the Month can be a good avenue to know, understand and expand OSM from India specific mappers.

Volunteering to help out the activity.

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Great to see you volunteering for setting this up.

Few comments:

  1. Handing out prize wouldn’t scale because most (if not all) mappers were/are passionate about contributing to OpenStreetMap and open culture GIS data. Putting a monetary value to it would be bad.
    Even if decided for it, we as a community project wouldn’t be able to raise money just to hand out for a survey/interview. So handing out prize is an added burden for fundraising, collection and disbursal POV.
  2. As OSM is a collaborative, community owned open data project, I would like the software to under Free Software/Open Source software license under a collaborative access so other people can pitch in for further development. It can go under OpenStreetMap India · GitHub
  3. At this moment, I’ll support the text/website based mapper of the month series and not podcast (if we went that way) as first we need to test the water for what works and what not.
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I broadly agree with what @sahilister said. The Mapper of the Month project would be organized for the OSM India community, a group of passionate individuals not driven by monetary incentives. However, if you do wish to provide additional visibility (podcast) or monetary benefits (prize) to mappers that are nominated/selected as the Mapper of the Month, I believe doing it in your personal capacity is alright.

About what needs to be done to get this started, to keep it simple overall, the website can be a static site, and the nomination/selection can be done through the Community Forum (similar to how the moderators were nominated and selected). Inspiration can be taken from OSM Belgium for the question template.

The visibility and prize, I’ll add in my personal capacity. That’s okay.
But we can keep the voting/selection process public.
If I get enough upvotes on this, will go ahead and put together the website.
Can’t find the OSM Belgium question template, can you share a link ?

I also like this idea, even if just a sort of socials-based recognition. Anything that encourages more and better contributions.


There may not be a specific template, but the questions tend to follow a general format across different months. These can be found on the OSM Belgium Mapper of the Month page: Mapper of the Month - OpenStreetMap Belgium

Since there seems to be a decent amount of interest in this, here’s a very rough proposal of how it could be done:

  • Each month:
    • New thread on the forum
    • 1 week for nomination
    • 1 week for voting
    • 2 weeks for interview
  • Nomination:
    • No self-nomination
    • An individual can nominate only up to a certain number of community members (say, 3?)
    • Nominee’s consent to being on the ballot
  • Voting:
    • Anonymous voting
    • Single vote per community member
    • Nomination does not count as a vote
  • Interview:
    • Set of questions that can be followed across months, similar to the questions used by OSM Belgium

I’d appreciate any feedback/suggestions on how this could be done, especially if someone is familiar with how other communities organize something of this sort. Additionally, if anyone would like to initiate and take this forward, that would be great.

For the website setup, a Jekyll site similar to the one used by OSM Belgium could work. Creating a custom theme would be nice, but is not necessary.