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Table of Contents
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 77-79

Women empowerment and information and communication technology

Editor in Chief, Vice Chancellor, Santosh Deemed to be University, Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh, India

Date of Web Publication11-Jan-2023

Correspondence Address:
Tripta S Bhagat
Santosh Deemed to be University, No. 1, Santosh Nagar, Pratap, Vihar, Ghaziabad - 201 009, Uttar Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2773-1987.367580

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How to cite this article:
Bhagat TS. Women empowerment and information and communication technology. Santosh Univ J Health Sci 2022;8:77-9

How to cite this URL:
Bhagat TS. Women empowerment and information and communication technology. Santosh Univ J Health Sci [serial online] 2022 [cited 2023 May 30];8:77-9. Available from: http://www.sujhs.org/text.asp?2022/8/2/77/367580

“Life is not easy for any of us.But, what of that?We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained”

-Marie Curie

Women play an important role in various sectors such as economic, political, social, sports, educational, and entrepreneurship. They are a crucial part of country's economy. Women can be empowered only if they are given education and made aware of their rights, and hence, they can themselves prioritize their lives. Violence has to be completely eradicate from their life, then and only then dream of empowerment becomes a reality. Women have to be given due respect in a society to have actual empowerment.

Science and technology have been an integral part of Indian civilization and culture. Women and men have been active in science from the inception of human civilization. Science is the creation of structure. Women becoming more involved in science and technology could mean that science and technology is used more often for constructive purposes than for destructive purposes. Women's rights and issues have always been a subject of serious concern of academicians, intelligentsia, and policy-makers. From pastoral society to contemporary information and global society, the role of women has changed drastically. The continuity of changes in socio-economic and psycho-cultural aspects of human living has influenced the role of women. India ranks the second position in economic contribution done by women, meaning women in India contribute significantly in economic growth.

Accessing information and communication technology (ICT) can promote sustainable socio-economic development and develop the women's life as a significant portion of the world's population. Technology exists in a social world and when technology is considered under the social context, the issues of women become a matter of interest. Women should not be considered as passive recipients of information and technology but as a developer. With the help of this trend, women can acquire information about new trends, their usage and knowledge they can explore to sell or develop their products/services by using the new trends of E-commerce. Knowledge of internet also can upgrade the knowledge of women about political, economic, and social situation of the whole word.

Women's involvement in science and technology encounters bias in regard to disciplines and academics or professional level of responsibilities. If women have to be successful in science, we need to create support structures and positive attitude toward science as a career for them. Therefore, empowerment of women has been recognized as a central goal in the development process of our country. To achieve a sustainable development in any country, each member of society has to be given equal opportunities, to unfold one's inner potential. Women empowerment is an important part for the overall national development.

In recent years, the empowerment of women has been recognized as the central issue in determining the status of women. But firstly, it is important to understand the relationship between women and technologies; any technology that is not appropriate for women is not truly technology. The range of women's economic activities in developing countries is very broad. It includes formal sector and informal sector employment, as well as self-employment in farming, trading and crafts production, etc. There are numerous possibilities for ICTs to improve women's economic activities in the field of trade, governance, education, health, crafts, employment in formal as well as informal sector.

ICTs bring lot of opportunities to women in the work situations and small business, Teleporting, flexi time and work from home arrangements are some of the gender dimensions of ICT's usages. Studies have shown women entrepreneurs tend to be more successful because of their trusted status in the community. This happens due to self-actualization. This applicability may invite government intervention to stop digital divide among women and also to more empowerment for women with ICT usage.

Since globalization is opening up the Indian economy suddenly at a very high speed, during the past decades, advances in information technology have facilitated a global communications network that transcends national boundaries and has an impact on public policy, private attitudes and behavior, especially of children and young adults. More women are involved in careers in the communications sector, but few have attained positions at the decision-making level or serve on governing boards and bodies that influence media policy. The areas in which ICT can put a greater control in the hands of women is wide and continuously expanding, from managing water distribution at the village level to standing for local elections and having access to lifelong learning opportunities.

ICT in convergence with other forms of communication has the potential to reach those women who hitherto have not been reached by any other media, thereby empowering them to participate in economic and social progress and make informed decision on issues that affect them.

For working women, digital information technology has catalyzed the process of women's empowerment by opening up avenues for women to freely articulate and share their experiences, concerns, and knowledge creating the possibility of their further enrichment. The use of IT has broadened the scope of their activities and enabled them to address the issues previously beyond their capacity. It has opened a direct window for women to the outside world. Information flows to them without any distortion and censoring. This leads to broadening of perspectives; greater understanding of their current situation. IT also has played an important role in changing the concept of work and workplace.

Now, women have employment options as flexibility and work at home concept. ICT has made the role of time and distance less significant in organizing business and production-related activities. As a result of technology, a high proportion of jobs outsourced by big firms are going to women. ICT offers women flexibility in time and space, women, therefore can work from outside the office, often from their home and at any time and raise extra income to become more financially independent and empowered. New areas of employment such as telemarketing, medical transcriptions have also opened up tremendous job opportunities for women. These jobs are definitely underpaid and fall at lower segment of IT Jobs, nevertheless, they are opening up avenues where none existed before.

Arriving at a higher rate of women's presence in science and technology fields, the barriers they face at the time skilled women enter the job market needs to be explored. The other factors that restrain women's further involvement in science and technology is the gender pay gap, culture and gender inequity, and lack of political will. To make the decision-making process, more sensitive to the problems faced by women, the number of women on decision-making and policy advisory bodies should be increased. The implications of the absence of women at these top- level positions in the science and technology sphere is significant and leads to the marginalization of women in the allocation of opportunities such as research funding and employment. New technologies can improve women's competitiveness in selected areas where intellectual competence supersedes physical strength. The new technology comes at a financial cost, which hinders its penetration to the individual and sometimes even at the community level and it becomes more difficult for the women in developing countries have little control over the household income and do not have the decision-making power to invest in these technologies. Capacity and skills Initiating knowledge networking processes and benefiting from them requires a threshold level of capacity and trained human resource power to handle technology and networking issues. Linguistic barriers ironically, much of the knowledge present in the global pool is in the English language, which is not understood by the poorest communities. There is very little content in the global pool in the vernacular language of nonEnglish speaking communities. This makes the amalgamation of local knowledge of women with the global knowledge a difficult task.

Science and technology brings economic growth and well-being to people and it is not only the empowerment of women through science and technology, but also the enrichment of science and technology through women's participation. It is not the concern of one nation only, but there are many players and stakeholders in the aim to reach this millennium goal. We hope that women become empowered at 100% and become equal to men so that both of them may work side by side for a better world of today. It is necessary to recognize that the participation of women in science and technology is no longer simply an issue of gender equity: it is also an issue that should be considered in the national economic development. Women are both consumers and producers, they can make a difference if they are involved and considered in economic development plans. With science and technology at the heart of economic development, women's participation in science and technology is therefore an essential part of economic development strategies. Government's role is crucial in bringing about these changes, through providing an adequate social infrastructure and policy environment which facilitate women's entry into the fields of science and technology.


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