Dalberg, in association with Intel and GlobeScan, has published a research document named “Women and the Web” citing how the Internet could benefit women and beyond. Bridging the Internet gap and creating new global opportunities in the low and middle-income countries, and fostering benefits mainly for the women is now possible with the trend of technology. Let’s summarize what the world women leaders have to say about ICT for Women and Development, extracted from the document itself.
Shelly Esque, the President, Intel Foundation – “Over just two decades, the Internet has worked a thorough revolution. Never before has information been so widely available, business more efficient and transparent, or people better connected to one another. The Internet can be a great equalizer. And yet, access to it is not equally distributed. The Internet gender gap is particularly salient in developing countries, with very real consequences for women and girls, their communities, and their nations.”
Michelle Bachelet, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women – “Information and communication technologies (ICTs) represent a significant opportunity for advancing gender equality, women’s empowerment and equitable development. ICTs and access to the Internet provide basic infrastructure for the 21st century and a set of tools that, when appropriately used, can offer benefits for women in all spheres of life. Given the convergence with traditional media, they also offer a mechanism for combatting pervasive gender stereotypes that continue to hold back progress for gender equality everywhere.”
Melanne Verveer, Ambassador-At-Large for Global Women’s Issues of US Department of State – “In February 2010, the Cherie Blair Foundation and GSMA Development Fund published the report Women & Mobile: A Global Opportunity,” quantifying for the first time the gender gap in access to mobile technology across developing countries. The report spawned a worldwide movement to close the mobile gender gap, led by the GSMA’s mWomen Initiative. At the mWomen launch, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton characterized it as “another big step on the road to gender equality, the freedom to connect, and all the opportunities that flow from it.”
The Executive Summary of the Women and the Web goes: 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, let alone fathomed. All around the world, the Internet is helping people to imagine new possibilities—and then, to make them happen.
You can download the research document to study more on ICT roles for Development and Women directly from Dalberg’s site here.