Gender & ICTs
“If a boy wants to attend a computer course community members encourage him but if a girl wants to go elders ask her why she wants to complicate her life,” says Dhaka-based Mahmud Hasan. In a country where one in every two males accesses information online yet only three in a hundred Bangladeshi women do, access for schoolgirls is not just about the availability of computers and classes. For girls, it requires the support of the entire community and flexible school schedules as revealed by a study using APC’s Gender Evaluation Methodology (GEM).
While in Africa and Latin America telecentres are trying to cater to the needs of both sexes by making them more accommodating to women, telecentres in the Philippines are trying to make them more inviting to men. A study which looked at one rural and one fishing community using GEM – the APC’s Gender Evaluation Methodology – has helped telecentre managers learn why men are staying away. APC talks to Angelo Juan Ramos of the Philippine telecentre network that carried out the study to find out how GEM uncovered surprising results that will help telecentres appeal to everyone.
In March GenARDIS grant winners met for the last time after more than a year of innovative research and work to improve rural women’s lives in countries like Ethiopia, the Dominican Republic and Zambia. With projects as diverse as community radio drama groups, pest control through information access and using technology to promote women’s inheritance and land rights, projects were as diverse as the countries they came from. But as this third round of small grants winds down, participants are determined to scale up their work.
APCNews – April 15 2010 – Year XI Issue 118
The news service on ICTs for social justice and sustainable development
A new study on rural internet use in the Philippines has found that women use telecentres socially.
For the last decade, cultural issues as well as a lack of information, capital and opportunity have been advanced as reasons why there are few women in technology-related businesses in Africa, but trends are slowly changing.
The emergence of mobile money services led by the growth of GSM networks has allowed many women to work from their homes or trading centers, helping them avoid traveling lo
GenARDIS is for the deaf woman in Ethiopia who can now generate her own income through digital photography.
Smallholders in the desert region of Huaral depend on irrigation cooperatives to water their crops. For ten years one coop association has been developing an information system based on telecentres to help them to make informed agricultural decisions. But the system is being under-utilised and they decided to find what was going wrong. Using APC’s Gender Evaluation Methodology (GEM) they found that older people and women over 40 were being left behind. While decision-making spaces are still mainly all-male, at least some issues identified by women are now on the table.