CAPE TOWN, South Africa, 01 March 2005
GRACE, a new project from APC-Africa-Women, aims to explore the ways in which women in Africa use information and communication technologies (ICTs) to empower themselves, the external, structural barriers as well as the internal factors which prevent them from using ICTs to their advantage, and the strategies they employ to overcome these barriers.
The project comprises 15 sub-projects, reflecting 14 research sites in 12 countries and one meta research sub project. While coherent with the general aim of the overall research initiative, the sub-projects differ from each other greatly in terms of target group and research focus.
The project aims to contribute to the debates focusing on women empowerment and ICTs through finding its own understandings of what “empowerment” and “gender” may mean in the African ICT context. The lessons learnt will be shared with policy makers and educators in the form of contextualised and local-specific recommendations.
An important focus of the overall project is capacity-building. Researchers will be given the opportunities to develop research capacity as well as capacity to use ICTs effectively. The project has made provision for intensive training and ongoing mentoring and support. It intends to integrate the research and the ICT aspects into a holistic capacity building experience for the participants.
There are also longer term objectives:
- A research network will be formed that can do ongoing gender and ICT research in Africa.
- A research base will be formed in various institutions throughout Africa that can contribute to the debates around gender and ICT issues.
- The knowledge which will be generated will influence policy at local, national and regional/global levels.
As yet there is no public website to refer to for further information; you may check the links below for more information in APC on ICT policy and women.