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Sunday, 27 October, 2019 - 10:36

Toxic masculinity and everyday sexism create a hostile environment for women in technology workplaces and in online spaces. In an increasingly digital world the male-domination of technology design, software production, and digital content is a serious problem that demands urgent remedy.

 

To understand the negative experiences of women in technology spaces and what can be done to remedy the situation we interviewed women from eleven African and South Asian countries as well as many employers and funders. We focused on women working in open-source communities because they have been under-researched at a time when companies are increasingly committing to use open source software as part of signing up to the Principles for Digital Development.

 

The resulting report entitled Towards a More Gender-Inclusive Open Source Community was co-authored with my colleagues Becky Faith and Evangelia Berdou from the Digital and Technology research team at IDS has been published by the Digital Impact Alliance.

 

The role and experience of women in technology workplaces

Computer coding was originally a female-dominated profession both in the US and the UK. However as it became increasingly central to economic and social life it was re-gendered as male work. Today women are under-represented and underpaid in almost all technology workplaces, especially in senior positions, and the situation is far worse for Black women and...

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Reply to Bill Easterly

People’s Power: have we got an app for that?

Mike Gurstein has injected some welcome politics into the ICT4D debate in his most recent blog post. Power and politics are taboo subjects in mainstream development discourse, so I’m gratefu

PhD in ICT4D: where to begin

Several people tweeted me to ask how I decided which university to apply to begin a PhD in ICT4D. This is how I chose:

Don’t Recycle!

Don’t Recycle your old computers. Reuse them!

Re-use is 20 times better for the environment than recyling,
according to research from the UN.

Extending the productive life of our PCs by upgrading and donating older computers for re-use is the single most effective thing that each of us can do to reduce the environmental impact of our own computing.

A is for Access

Our practice of applying ICT for Development (ICT4D) is often concerned with access issues: trying to ensure that even the most marginalised communities, in the most remote locations, have equitable access to the tools that they require for development.

Vapourware

There was a lot of media coverage this weekend about the unveiling in India of the the world’s cheapest ‘laptop’ which, media reports say, will cost $35 and is ‘likely’ to go down to $10. http://bit.ly/bqngWZ

Designed by the respected Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi the device is not a laptop at all but rather an iPad-like touchscreen slate.

10 million first steps

How do you measure the value of being able to save lives with telemedicine?
Or of being able to provide the training that means a young women gets her first job as a network engineer?

The eWaste Billions

Our love for the latest gadgets & gismos puts the planet in peril.

More precisely the problem is toxic design & manufacture, rapid obsolescence & replacement cycles, and inadequate reuse & recycling.

Death by a Thousand Cuts

The axing by the government of the WEEE Advisory Board is a matter of real concern, coming as it does on the back of decisions to cut the budgets of DEFRA and of the Environment Agency.

The new government says it wants to bring the responsibilities of the WEEE Advisory Board ‘back into government’ where there is more accountability.

ICT Against Apartheid

One of the people who played a key role in establishing Computer Aid had previously spent 22 years in jail for treason.

Denis Goldberg was a member of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the armed wing of the ANC, and amongst his other duties he organised the supply logistics for the ANC camps in Zambia, Zimbabwe and other ‘Frontline States’.

Enough Email Already

When old-timers like myself first began applying information and communication technology to development there was no such thing as ICT4D, no world wide web, no broadband, and no SMS.

Working in the Nicaraguan parliament after the Sandinista revolution, my first assignment was training staff to use WordPerfect for MS-DOS on a pre-hard-disk IBM PC.

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