From activists in Egypt to coffee farmers in Colombia, the Internet has transformed the lives of billions of people. It functions as a gateway to ideas, resources, and opportunities that never could have been realized before. All around the world, the Internet is helping people to imagine new possibilities—and then, to make them happen. But women and girls are being left behind. On average across the developing world, nearly 25 percent fewer women than men have access to the Internet, and the gender gap soars to nearly 45 percent in regions like sub-Saharan Africa.
This essay on gender equity and the use of ICTs in education looks at how ICTs are being used by girls and women in the education space in the focus countries. Gender disparity is a critical issue in all focus countries, except perhaps the Maldives and Sri Lanka to an extent. Most countries in the region are characterized by low female literacy levels, lower participation in the labor force, and lower representation in the administrative and political arena.
Empowering Women Through ICT-Based Business Initiatives: An Overview of Best Practices in E-Commerce/E-Retailing Projects
Information and communication technologies (ICTs) have been increasingly promoted as a key solution for comprehensive development, poverty eradication and the empowerment of historically disadvantaged groups, such as women and minorities in the Global South. ICT-based business initiatives, and e-commerce projects in particular, have been hailed as “potential goldmines" for women’s empowerment.
Supporting gender equality in the deployment of and access to information and communication technologies (ICTs) involves accepting that gender relations and ICTs within any given community are continuously being shaped by one another. There is a growing body of research on gender and ICTs in the developing world. However, little empirical evidence exists on how certain aspects of gender relations can influence the ways that ICTs are perceived and used, framings which can, in turn, reinforce or reshape existing gender norms and practices.
Domestic responsibilities, cultural restrictions on mobility, lesser economic power as well as lack of relevance of content to their lives, marginalize women from the information sector. The present paper focuses on key questions and concerns on the use and accessibility of ICT and the potential that it possesses to transform the position of women in the Indian society, more specifically in Odisha. The questions range from who are the ‘real’ beneficiaries of ICT? Who is monopolizing the course of ICT?
Delivering mobile-enabled agricultural services (‘mAgri services’) to women in developing countries is a major market opportunity for the mobile industry that also offers substantial social benefits. The mAgri services market is nascent but growing—GSMA has tracked 106 active, global deployments by mobile network operators (MNOs) and third party providers. Women working in agriculture account for an estimated 556 million potential users globally, but are underserved as a unique customer segment.
Empowering Women Entrepreneurs through Information and Communications Technologies - A Practical Guide
The promotion of micro and small-scale enterprises (MSEs) has been recognized as an important strategy for advancing the economic empowerment of women while reducing poverty and gender inequality. Women entrepreneurs are offered new opportunities by ICTs to start and grow businesses. Through new as well as traditional forms of ICTs, women entrepreneurs are reaching out to customers, becoming more efficient and building businesses in ways they could not do before.
Mobile financial services (MFS) are emerging rapidly in the developing world, with over 150 mobile money deployments live and over 110 more planned worldwide at present. Markets such as Tanzania, Bangladesh and Pakistan are realizing success and are potentially able to replicate the widespread adoption of Safaricom’s M-PESA service in Kenya. Others are still works-in-progress, finding mass adoption and scale elusive.
This case study examines the information channels and use of ICTs by men and women farmers around Nakuru and Thika in Kenya. It contributes to a growing body of literature that aims to understand how ICTs can close gender gaps in agriculture and lead to more equitable opportunities for farmers.