Thursday, April 23, 2009


I received this forward from my colleague....and this is so VERY TRUE!!!


Remember, when u marry a working women you should
marry with these facts as well.

Here is a girl, who is as much educated as you are;

Who is earning almost as much as you do;

One, who has dreams and aspirations just as you have
because she is as human as you are;

One, who has never entered the kitchen in her life
just like you or your Sister hasen't, as she was busy in studies and
competing in a system that gives no special concession
to girls for their culinary achievements

One, who has lived and loved her parents & brothers &
sisters, almost as much as you do for 20-25 years of her life;

One, who has bravely agreed to leave behind all that,
her home, people who love her, to adopt your home,
your family, your ways and even your family name.

One, who is somehow expected to be a master-chef from
day #1, while you sleep oblivious to her predicament
in her new circumstances, environment and that

One, who is expected to make the tea, first thing in
the morning and cook food at the end of the day, even
if she is as tired as you are,maybe more, and yet
never ever expected to complain; to be a servant, a
cook, a mother, a wife, even if she doesn't want to;
and is learning just like you are as to what you want
from her; and is clumsy and sloppy at times and knows
that you won't like it if she is too demanding, or if
she learns faster than you;

One, who has her own set of friends, and that includes
boys and even men at her workplace too, those, who she
knows from school days and yet is
willing to put all that on the back-burners to avoid
your irrational jealousy, unnecessary competition and
your inherent insecurities;

Yes, she can drink and dance just as well as you can,
but won't, simply
because you won't like it, even though you say

One, who can be late from work once in a while when
deadlines, just like yours, are to be met;

One, who is doing her level best and wants to make
this most important relationship in her entire life a
grand success, if you just help her
some and trust her;

One, who just wants one thing from you, as you are the
only one she knows in your entire house - your
unstinted support, your sensitivities
and most importantly - your understanding, or love, if
you may call it.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

IT Women in the industry

THE days of bra-burning anger are over, aren't they? The modern corporate world has embraced gender diversity, right?

"(I am) sick of banging my head on the glass ceiling," says one furious female information and communications technology worker. "(I am) sick of the added scrutiny, just plain tired of corporate life, upset when yet again passed over for a dill who thinks he's my equal, when he has less experience, less know-how and fewer qualifications."

While the glass ceiling dissolves in the enlightened world, many women believe ICT hides dark corners of exclusion.

The proportion of women to men in the occupation has fallen steadily in the past five years, from 26.65 per cent in 2001 to 20 per cent in 2005, according to the Department of Education, Science and Training. Women are leaving IT and not being replaced.

The angry voice above may explain why. It comes from a new survey of 289 women in ICT by researchers at James Cook University - the final stage of a big research project into low participation rates of females in ICT-related trades. Preliminary results, shown exclusively to Next, paint a worrying picture.

More than one in 10 women in an ICT industry experiences blatant discrimination, and more than half say the ICT culture creates subtle discrimination, the survey found.

More than a third said important decisions were made outside the office, and 20 per cent said their workplace culture excluded them from non-work socialising that was necessary for career advancement.

Almost 20 per cent said they need to act masculine to get their own way, and more than 40 per cent said they were held to a higher standard then their male peers.

Many respondents complained of a "silicon ceiling". One woman told the survey, "be prepared to work your butt off while others around you snooze". Another said, "keep up with the latest technical trends if you want respect from your male peers. To advance in the ICT industry you have to work harder than your male peers."

Consultant Dr Catherine Norton has heard similar stories from across the country. She has just returned from a series of workshops on leadership for women in ICT, sponsored by Australian Women in Science and IT Entity (AWise) and funded by the Australian Government Office for Women.

"The stories I hear are that women need help in areas like influence, like learning leadership skills, feeling like it's a bit of a boys club, and they don't feel like they can break through barriers," Dr Norton says. "They come to the workshop for some renewal, to get the spark and the passion back because they are burnt out and tired, they feel they are working very hard and not getting anywhere.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tech girls are chic, not just geek

Tech girls are chic, not just geek is a fun new book showing that it takes all types of people to work in Information Technology (IT). 16 'tech girls' are women working in a range of technology jobs across Australia. They are a bunch of fun and funky women who find working with technology challenging and interesting, and they are far from fitting the stereotypical 'geek' image portrayed by the media. They use their technical and/or non-technical skills (usually a combination of both) to have a successful career in IT.

So who wouldn't want to work with technology? There are heaps of jobs all over the world, travel to exotic locations, interesting and challenging work, and you often don't have to work in a boring office. Sounds like a great career? We think so! So why do so few people (especially girls) choose this type of career? That's a great question. Researchers have been trying to uncover this mystery for many years, and conclude that the industry has a serious image problem. The stereotype is that working with technology is boring, and that you have to be nerdy and spend all day in front of a computer alone. This is not what Information Technology (IT) is all about. Once you see the book you will see why! You can see a bunch of fabulous gals who work with technology every day; and they love it.

What if you were the person who invented the iPod, or YouTube, or Instant Messaging? Could this be you? Why not? It had to be someone! And it could be you. Imagine what technology would look like if we had more girls creating it? It might be a very different world! And new technology jobs are created every day, so your job of the future might not exist yet. How exciting!

Aimed at girls aged 12-16, the book also has wide appeal to educators and employers. As the number of females studying and working with technology is at an all time low, we hope to inspire girls to think a little deeper about technology, what they like about it, what they are good at, and what are the things that are important to them in their future career. We believe you will be able to relate to us and what we do, and we hope to help you understand that it is ok and even a good choice to have a career working with technology.


Sex no bar to geekdom

Girls and boys all like their toys

The so-called technology gender gap has slammed shut in the US: university students, whether male or female, report near identical take-up of technology, according to the latest 360 Youth College Explorer Study.

A survey of over 4,000 students found that men and women spend similar amounts of time playing computer games online, are equally likely to own a handheld game system and to send text messages on their phones.

Net use is pervasive: 95 per cent of students are online, and 65 per cent connect via broadband. This may explain why students are four times more likely to download music on the Net than Joe Public is. Even so, the actual numbers are still very small. Just eight per cent of men and five per cent of women claim to be regular downloaders. The RIAA must be pleased.

The survey did flag a few gender differences: men are still far more likely to own a games console, with 15 per cent playing daily, compared to two per cent of women. MP3 players are also more popular among the guys: twice as many men as women like their portable music in its solid state.

Women still lead the field in communication: they are more likely to own mobile phones (82 per cent vs. 74 per cent) and answering machines. ®

By Lucy Sherriff

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Take Back The Tech - Information and Communication Technologies for Development

"Take Back The Tech" is a viral marketing campaign reclaiming technology to end violence against women. It is an initiative of the APC Women's Networking Support Programme (APC WNSP), supporting women networking for social change, through the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs). The success of the campaign depends on the participation of journalists, webmasters and bloggers making the decision to support the campaign on their own Web sites. ICT4D practitioners, webmasters, NGOs, get involved!

This example of online activism, using ICTs to serve Human Development, is very interesting. Such a campaign experiments and shows how to use concretely latest Web technologies such as bookmarks, RSS feeds, viral marketing, blogs, advanced media tool kits - including the ability to localize the campaign - and more to bring social positive changes.

Articles, postcards, podcasts, blogs, a wide range of local actions are supporting the campaign: In Uganda, a SMS campaign called "Speak out! Stand Out!" is organized by WOUGNET to collect messages against violence against women. In Quebec, feminists and communication rights activists are creating short video clips and comic postcards to protest violence against women. In Malaysia, Burmese refugees are making online audio defending women's rights.

As shown by Take Back the Take, Web tools, including viral marketing, Web 2.0 services and even web advertising programs are now more and more used by Development organizations and practitioners to build up sensitization campaigns, recruit new volunteers, find funds and promote their own projects. In somehow, "Take Back the Tech" illustrates a more mature Internet era, in which non profits and Human Development organizations are starting to take full benefits of the technology to promote their actions.


Gender & ICTs

What is gender?

Gender is used in this toolkit to refer to the socially constructed roles and socially learned behaviors and expectations of women and men in a particular society. These relations and the roles that women and men assume are culturally defined and institutionally embedded. Whereas biological sex (being male or female) is not easily altered, gender as a social identity changes over time (historically) and space (geographically). Gender roles of men or women in one society may differ from another. In many cultural contexts it will be difficult to convince men to allow, or encourage, their daughters or wives to receive training or to invest in ICT unless men can see that they and the whole family will also benefit. Gender considers both men and women and the relations between them.

Why is gender equality a development issue?

Research has established the business case for gender equality: development projects that take gender relations into account are more likely to achieve their objectives than those that do not Progress towards gender equality is directly correlated with the alleviation of global poverty. Social considerations, however, are not easily incorporated into policies, laws, markets, and organizations. It is particularly difficult to incorporate them into technical projects. The process of incorporating gender equality considerations into development institutions, projects, and programs is often referred to as "gender mainstreaming." Studies confirm that without direct intervention, mainstreaming of gender equality concerns will not occur (Kimani 2000; IFPRI 2000).

What are ICTs?

Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are the hardware, software, networks, and media used to collect, store, process, transmit, and present information in the form of voice, data, text, and images. They range from telephone, radio, and television to the Internet. Given the focus on using ICTs to reach women and men equally in developing countries, particularly those in peri-urban and rural areas, this toolkit looks at the full range of ICTs and not only at the more advanced technologies. Decisions about which ICTs are appropriate have gender equality implications.

ICTs have tremendous potential for promoting and achieving sustainable development that is also gender-equal. This potential is yet to be realized. The purpose of this toolkit is to identify opportunities, highlight innovative projects and activities, and suggest how the World Bank and other agencies can use ICTs to help realize the potential for gender equality.

What is Engendering ICTs?

The standard meaning of engender is "give rise to." In recent years, gender advocates have adopted the word and given it an additional meaning-"integrating gender into development work." This new connotation of the word was used for the first time in the World Bank report Engendering Development (2001) which provided empirical and analytical evidence of the links between gender equality and poverty alleviation. ICTs can be used to help alleviate poverty as well as gender inequality. To do so, existing gender disparities that are related to the digital divide need to be identified and removed, and the potential of ICTs to empower both men and women must be exploited in full. Therefore, "engendering ICTs" is the process of identifying and removing gender disparities in the access to and use of ICTs, as well as of adapting ICTs to the special needs, constraints, and opportunities of women. Any such adaptation should take advantage of women's special knowledge and their strong informal networks and support systems that may make it possible to combine electronic communication with traditional communication systems.

Why a concern for gender equality in ICT projects?

Globally, ICTs transform the way production is organized and information is shared. ICTs offer flexibility of time and space, a way out of isolation, and access to knowledge and productive resources. They are enabling tools for economic development and social change. These attributes make ICTs a valuable resource for women in developing counties, who often suffer from limited availability of time, social isolation, and lack of access to knowledge and productive resources.

Why concentrate on women if we are talking about gender?

When the underlying concern is gender equality, we frequently find ourselves talking about the situation of women because the existing gender inequalities in access to vital rights and resources generally affect women and girls more negatively than men and boys. These inequalities include disparities in basic human rights, in political participation, and in access to resources such as schooling, credit, and jobs. In the case of ICTs, areas in which girls and women suffer such inequalities directly affect their access to and use of the technologies.

However, women in the developing world do not belong to a single homogeneous group. There are highly variable political, socioeconomic, and cultural differences that affect the lives of both men and women across different regions of the world. Not all women are disadvantaged (for example, middle-class women will usually have much greater access to ICTs than most poor men). There are also major differences based on age, health, and ethnicity, and substantial regional variations in the relations between gender and ICTs. Whereas in some parts of the world, girls shy away from computer science, it is often regarded as a women's field in some countries of South and West Asia.

Why do women need ICTs?

Women need ICTs for the same reasons as men: to get more information to carry out their productive, reproductive, and community roles; to conduct their businesses, as a service of employment and to work in the ICT industry; to find resources for themselves, their families, their work, and their communities; and to have a voice in their lives, their community, their government, and the larger world that shares their issues and problems. In summary, they need ICTs to function in a digital world.

source: worldbank site

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Women Empowerment through ICT

Discussion2: How can ICT make a difference in empowering women? How can the gender issue be mainstreamed in ICT policies and strategies? Should it be mainstreamed?

Every one and a half month, we arrange online discussion related to women in ICT.

It is a hard truth that the majority of the poor are women and they experience vulnerability and powerlessness to a much higher degree than men. Equitable access to ICT technology and the autonomy to receive and produce the information relevant to their concerns and perspectives are therefore critical issues for women. ICT for the vast majority of women in developing countries is not feasible for the foreseeable future. Until they know the importance of ICT and how it can empower them, women will still lag behind.

Take a look at how mobile telephony and the Internet have revolutionized the way we work, learn, interact and relax. Information Technology (IT) and Telecommunications are changing our way of life. ICTs are here to stay because we live in the age where quality access to information and knowledge is a key to survival and performance.

So, how can ICT empower women? How can gender be mainstreamed in ICT policies and strategies? Discussion on dgroup came up with some probable answers and solutions as prior.

Summery on the second discussion:

Women Empowerment through ICT: What is the role of ICT in the economic and social development of women? This issue touches all facet of society. Information and communication technologies could give a major boost to the political and social empowerment of women, and the promotion of gender equality. Women must be active ICT participants - users, professionals, creators, producers and entrepreneurs. To make a difference, women must engage in productive ICT and ICT-driven activities – usage and production.

Equal representation: Should aim to develop a more equitable representation, not only in terms of ratios but also in terms of responsibilities and authority. This “engendered” participation at a high level of decision-making will ensure that women are no longer subjected to be passive consumers of services offered to them but rather enable women to play a decisive role in deciding the kind of services they want and the structures and strategies which could best address the needs of women in society and community.

Capitalize and leverage usage of ICT capabilities: Potential of ICT will only be realized if the gender dimensions of the Information Society – in terms of users’ needs, conditions of access, policies, applications and regulatory frameworks – are properly understood and adequately addressed by all stakeholders.

Easy access and control: Access refers to the ability to make use of the technology as well as the information and knowledge it provides, while control refers to the ability to decide how ICTs are used and who can have access to them. Effective use refers to the ability of women and girls to use ICTs strategically to advance social development goals. Without real access to technology, there is a limit to how and what women can contribute. Access needs to improve – availability and quality. More women, especially in the rural and informal sector, need to use ICT to get things done in their lives and work. Better access to information and the ability to tap into the benefits of ICT enables women to be more competitive.

Gender defined role: Women must combine simultaneously two jobs – the professional and the domestic. So, it is difficult for them to manage time.

Absence from decision making process: Although the number of women in jobs involving ICT expertise is constantly rising, the same is not necessarily true of women’s access to decision-making and control of these resources. Women are under-represented in all ICT decision-making structures, including policy and regulatory institutions, ministries responsible for ICTs, and boards and senior management of private ICT companies. Decision making in ICTs is generally treated as a purely technical area (typically for male experts), where civil society viewpoints are given little or no space, rather than as a political domain.

ICT policies and strategies: The policy and strategies during the policy implementation should focus on creating competent women who can contribute in the revision of these policies document, avoiding a situation where most of the policies are formulated by patriarchal mindset.