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Abstract

The main question to be discussed in this article is: Why do women not program? In other words, why, in an activity that appears similar to others where women have gained ground, one cannot find an analogous process of incorporation? We propose a scheme of five related factors in order to analyse the genealogy of women’s exclusion from the world of software. First, we discuss the relation between gender and technologies in general, focusing on the initial stages of socialisation. Second, we fast forward a few years in the lives of boys and girls and we analyse their first interaction with digital technologies. Next, in relation to puberty or adolescence, we inquire into peer-group dynamics which are established by those who dedicate much of their time to computers. Fourth, we take into account the gender gap in college or bachelor degrees related to informatics. Lastly, we analyse the common representations of and beliefs about gender that employers hold in relation to informatics workers. These five parts of the explanation have different foundations. Some rely strongly on our qualitative fieldwork in Buenos Aires; others are based on texts or statistics which belong to other authors.

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... In all these studies, either the focus or the gender bias appears, since they are located in the second generation of analysis; that is to say, from the second-order digital divide or from the perspectives of inclusion and the threedimensional division of the digital divide [20,21] that integrate the gender component as a sociodemographic element or dependent variable. Other investigations have directly addressed the issue of the digital gender gap from the perspective of second-generation studies on the digital gap [6,8,9,21,33,34,36,52]. Lastly, it is worth mentioning that other studies can be placed within a poststructuralist and critical approach that invites reflection on the masculine within the sciences of the computing and cybernetics, as well as how to rethink and demystify the concept of the digital gender gap [9,33,51]. ...
... This has resulted in studies that contemplate the reality of women in an eminently masculine and masculinized field, such as cybernetic and computer sciences, making it possible to make visible problems derived from vertical, horizontal and motivational segregation in access to ICT. It is from these investigations that the realities suffered by women in the region are problematized, as well as how this derives or correlates with other inequalities that reduce the possibilities of women to develop, at all levels, in the society of communication and information [6,8,10,30,34,35,38,39,42,44,47,[50][51][52][53]. ...
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Article
Gender equity in education is one of the main targets for social justice and sustainable development. This literature review, from a gender approach, was conducted to understand how the gender digital divide (GDD) in information and communication technologies (ICT) and education are related in Latin American countries. A total of 28 articles have been analyzed as a satisfactory sample of the scientific literature to examine how this relation is explored and its influence, to acknowledge political stakeholders, as well as provide information and proposals to address the digital gender divide in education research in this region. The results show the need to develop research from the pedagogical and gender perspectives in Latin America, since they are not represented within an obvious problem.
... A number of studies Eccles (1994), Zarrett et.al. (2006), , Lang (2012), Gras-Velazquez, Joyce, and Debry (2009), Sáinz et al. (2009), Yansen and Zukerfeld (2014), Yansen and Zukerfeld (2014), Trauth, Quesenberry, and Morgan (2004), Pechtelidis, Kosma, and Chronaki (2015), Pechtelidis, Kosma, and Chronaki (2015), Nelson (2014), Moakler and Kim (2014), Christoph et. al. (2015), Cheryan, Master, and Meltzoff (2015), Cheryan, Master and Meltzoff (2015), Zagami et.al. ...
... A number of studies Eccles (1994), Zarrett et.al. (2006), , Lang (2012), Gras-Velazquez, Joyce, and Debry (2009), Sáinz et al. (2009), Yansen and Zukerfeld (2014), Yansen and Zukerfeld (2014), Trauth, Quesenberry, and Morgan (2004), Pechtelidis, Kosma, and Chronaki (2015), Pechtelidis, Kosma, and Chronaki (2015), Nelson (2014), Moakler and Kim (2014), Christoph et. al. (2015), Cheryan, Master, and Meltzoff (2015), Cheryan, Master and Meltzoff (2015), Zagami et.al. ...
Chapter
This study provides an empirical investigation of gender differences in ICT studies in selected public secondary schools. It describes gender differences in terms of students' attitude, perception, and choice of ICT subjects, parental influence, age, and religion. The study engages survey of selected public secondary schools in the region and in-depth interview of relevant stakeholders for the primary data. The study findings are anchored on existing literature, relevant theoretical positions, and data from statistical analyses. It concludes that equal opportunities in ICT studies for male and female students will empower all groups to contribute maximally to science and technology revolution for achieving needed economic and national development in the country.
... Of the nine socio-cultural articles, five focused on category membership stereotypes (Cheryan, Master, & Meltzoff, 2015;Pechtelidis, Kosma, & Chronaki, 2015;Yansen & Zukerfeld, 2014;Lang, 2012) and strategies to negate or mitigate stereotypes. Three articles explored social learning (Pechtelidis, Kosma, & Chronaki, 2015;Yansen & Zukerfeld, 2014;Christoph, Goldhammer, Zylka, & Hartig, 2015) as an effective strategy to engage female students with Computer Science, one article addressed Encouragement, Role Models /Mentoring, Gender Grouping, Educational Policy Reform, and Educational Games (Trauth, Quesenberry, & Morgan, 2004), two articles addressed Encouragement, Role Models/Mentoring, and Awareness Raising (Nelson, 2014, Moakler & Kim, 2014, and a final article defied categorisation (Gras-Velazquez, Joyce, & Debry, 2009) on why girls are not attracted to ICT studies and careers. ...
... Of the nine socio-cultural articles, five focused on category membership stereotypes (Cheryan, Master, & Meltzoff, 2015;Pechtelidis, Kosma, & Chronaki, 2015;Yansen & Zukerfeld, 2014;Lang, 2012) and strategies to negate or mitigate stereotypes. Three articles explored social learning (Pechtelidis, Kosma, & Chronaki, 2015;Yansen & Zukerfeld, 2014;Christoph, Goldhammer, Zylka, & Hartig, 2015) as an effective strategy to engage female students with Computer Science, one article addressed Encouragement, Role Models /Mentoring, Gender Grouping, Educational Policy Reform, and Educational Games (Trauth, Quesenberry, & Morgan, 2004), two articles addressed Encouragement, Role Models/Mentoring, and Awareness Raising (Nelson, 2014, Moakler & Kim, 2014, and a final article defied categorisation (Gras-Velazquez, Joyce, & Debry, 2009) on why girls are not attracted to ICT studies and careers. The only non Socio-cultural factor paper, focused on Structural factors (Google, 2014) addressing issues of Student Encouragement and Educational Policy Reform with four key influencing factors identified as: ...
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Computer education, with a focus on Computer Science, has become a core subject in the Australian Curriculum and the focus of national innovation initiatives. Equal participation by girls, however, remains unlikely based on their engagement with computing in recent decades. In seeking to understand why this may be the case, a Delphi consensus process was conducted using a wide range of experts from industry and academia to explore existing research and interventions, recommending four key approaches: engaging girls in the Digital Technologies curriculum; addressing parental preconceptions and influences; providing positive role models and mentors; and supporting code clubs for girls. Unfortunately, all of these approaches have been widely implemented, and while individually successful at the scale of their implementation, have failed to systemically improve female participation in computing. The only discernable difference between initiatives to improve female participation in computing and the successful approaches in other fields such as science, has been the availability of a compulsory developmental curriculum beginning from the start of school, and it is this that may provide a scaffold that sustains female engagement over critical periods such as adolescence, when participation in computing begins to dramatically decline.
... Particularly in Silicon Valley has the exclusion of women been observed, as indicated in titles like 'Why is Silicon Valley so awful to women?' (Mundy 2017), and 'Brotopiabreaking up the boy's club of Silicon Valley' (Chang 2018). Moreover, women have been viewed as lacking self-efficacy (Galpin et al. 2003), playfulness (Yansen and Zukerfeld 2014), experience, (Brosnan 1998;Brosnan and Davidson 1996) or interest in computers (Siann 1997;Symmonds 2000). The stereotypical image of computer scientists as male, asocial hackers has been found to alienate women from the field (Gansmo, Lagesen, and Sørensen 2003). ...
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This paper address how we may understand inclusion strategies designed to reduce the gender gap in higher education in engineering and ICT engineering in particular. Based on a case study of a long-term inclusion effort and statistics on recruitment and retainment, we argue that inclusion initiatives which address important inclusion needs and put down a substantial effort are likely to be successful. However, such changes seem to be not very sustainable, and need continuous effort. Based on our findings and a review of previous research we argue that inclusion efforts are instrumental in gaining a higher share of women in ICT, but that the win may be short-lived. We suggest that there is a need also to work for a higher share of women faculty to obtain more sustainable recruitment and retainment of women in ICT. Moreover, we found that the probability of dropout among men students was systematically reduced with increased gender balance, which indicates that more gender-balanced programs are more attractive to remain in for both men and women.
... Este estado de situación es consecuencia de un conjunto de brechas que se inician a partir de los diferentes estímulos que se brindan en los primeros años de la niñez -por ejemplo, a partir del contacto inicial con las tecnologías digitales o los video juegos -y se refuerzan a lo largo de procesos educativos, en los que se reproducen estereotipos de género (Clayton et al., 2009). Como resultado, la vocación hacia carreras vinculadas a las TIC resulta muy baja, forjándose estereotipos como el de las mujeres que no programan (Yansen y Zukerfeld, 2014) o no se desenvuelven de forma adecuada en el mundo digital moderno. Lamentablemente, la brecha se consolida en el mundo laboral, con una "leaky pipeline", con muchas más fugas que en otras disciplinas (Camp, 1997). ...
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p> Resumen Este trabajo analiza algunas dimensiones de la brecha de género en el campo de las TIC. Ésta no puede comprenderse en forma cabal, si no se reconoce cuál ha sido la historia de la mujer en la disciplina. Esta es una historia de mujeres invisibles, opacadas, a quienes se les negaron las posiciones de liderazgo o se les dificultó sobremanera alcanzarlas. También expone una situación donde la negación de la mujer se llevó al extremo. Tal es el caso de la Inteligencia Artificial y el taller que le dio origen como disciplina, configurando un universo masculino que se manifiesta desde las casi nulas posiciones de liderazgo, hasta la bibliografía sesgada que es discutida en el artículo. Abstract This contribution analyzes some dimensions of the gender gap in the ICT field. This problem cannot be fully understood without recognizing the history of women in the discipline. This is a story of invisible, opaque women, who were denied leadership positions or had great difficulty in reaching them. It also exposes a situation where the denial of women was carried to the extreme. Such is the case of Artificial Intelligence and the workshop that gave rise to it as a discipline. This birth configured a masculine universe that manifests itself from the almost null positions of leadership, to the biased bibliography that is discussed in the article.</p
... In order to attract more females to the IT profession, there is a need to focus on how to make the study of IT attractive to secondary school students (Wang, Hong, Ravitz, & Ivory, 2015;Yansen, 2014;Zagami et al., 2015). The situation is complex to remedy (Ridley & Young, 2012) and requires intervention to influence perceptions of careers in the IT workforce (Quesenberry & Trauth, 2012). ...
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This paper reports on the outcomes from a pilot study targeted at mothers of school children in Melbourne, Australia. The aim of the study was to engender a positive view of technology in the participants and to introduce the concept of Information Technology (IT) as a potential career. Mothers were given the opportunity to develop basic IT skills and learn about different IT career pathways for their children with an emphasis on their daughters’ choices. Mothers were offered an evening course over a four week period that was designed to introduce them to a range of social media and Web 2.0 tools. Their opinions were documented using both questionnaires and informal discussions. It explored whether their attitudes towards IT can be changed by up-skilling and introducing them to the technologies their children commonly use. The findings of the pilot study suggest that addressing this demographic has the potential to make the participants question their pre-conceptions about IT careers for women.
... However, previous research has generally made no effort to consider gender in their design, even, in some cases, deliberately excluding it (Coleman, 2012). When gender has been considered, it is invariably strictly along binary lines and research is often structured to answer three interconnected questions: why do so few women join these communities, why do so many of them leave earlier than might be expected and what can be done to improve both these issues (Blum and Frieze, 2005; Hazzan, Blum and Dias, 2006;Kelan, 2009;Reagle, 2013;Bonaldi and Silva, 2014;Yansen and Zukerfeld, 2014). Reports of general and sexual harassment in STEM workplaces being rife have become a common occurrence (Banchefsky et al., 2016;Kasperkevic, 2016). ...
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Thesis
This study uses semi structured interviews with female participants in an open source software project to investigate the lived experiences of women in this type of ‘geek’ community and the gendered nature of computer mediated and in person communication in these groups. Thematic analysis of the data gathered found that women in this group were generally less subject to overt general and sexual harassment and sexist abuse than might be expected from previous research into similar male-dominated environments. Further, as a ‘hybrid’ community in which both online and in person communication is used extensively, little difference in treatment was reported between these two spaces. However, in person communication was for additional depth it brought to personal connections.
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El texto tiene por objetivo sistematizar la literatura que aborda la relación entre género y actividades informáticas en los últimos años, específicamente aquella que de distintos modos ayuda a responder a la pregunta por los factores que alejan a las mujeres de las actividades laborales vinculadas a la informática, prototípicamente ubicadas en el sector de software y servicios informáticos (SSI) en Argentina. Aunque la pregunta es, a primera vista, bastante acotada, su respuesta lleva a revisar una vasta literatura. Dedicamos el primer apartado, primero, a delimitar el objeto del escrito, definiendo a las actividades informáticas; y segundo, a destacar la importancia de esta problemática, lo que implica repasar la situación actual del nivel de participación de las mujeres en las actividades informáticas, especialmente a nivel nacional, e incorporando datos sobre el ámbito laboral y la educación superior. El segundo apartado precisa el criterio de ordenamiento de la literatura. Luego, cada sub-apartado da cuenta de la literatura que ha realizado aportes para cada una de las etapas identificadas. Finalmente, presentamos las consideraciones finales.
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In this chapter, I investigate how software engineers account for their professional practice in three different sites and cultural contexts, Norway, Malaysia, and California, and what role gender play in their accounts. I am exploring how they describe their work tasks, practices, skills, motivations and experiences, and where and how gender surfaces or become relevant in these accounts.
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Feminist research on technology tends to view technology either as neutral or as determining, drawing implications for women that are either overoptimistic or overpessimistic. By contrast, feminist scholarship within the field of technology studies, or feminist technology studies, is more ambivalent politically, and sees technology as socially constructed, or coproduced, alongside gender. This paper elaborates this framework by exploring various ways in which technology may be gendered, drawing in part on recent research on engineering. It focuses, in turn, on gender in and of technological artefacts; on the durability of masculine images of technology; on gender in the detail of technical knowledge and practice; and on the place of technology in (some) men's gender identities. This framework provides a more sound basis for understanding the ambivalence about technology which many women experience and, thus, for a praxis which steers a cyborgian course between uncritical endorsement and outright rejection of technology.
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Since the launch of the Women into Science and Engineering (WISE) campaign in 1984, many initiatives to increase the participation of women in these areas of work have been launched under its banner and the WISE approach has come to represent the dominant discourse on equal opportunities for women in science and technology, having a major influence on both policy and practice. This article examines the WISE discourse in depth, arguing that WISE has had only very limited success because it is so narrowly focused on women's 'choices', which it understands as being constrained both by a lack of information about scientific and technological work and by a masculine image of science and technology which, it infers, is alienating to women. Drawing on empirical research which examined both women's and men's occupational decision-making processes, this article takes issue with this construction of the problem, arguing that whilst the assumptions of the WISE discourse cannot be supported empirically, the discourse itself nevertheless continues to structure and limit the space women have to speak of the conflicts and contradictions they experience, explanations for which require a better understanding of the ways in which subjective experiences of both gender and sexuality impinge upon work choices.
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Article
Technology and Culture 40.3 (1999) 455-483 J. Presper Eckert and John W. Mauchly, household names in the history of computing, developed America's first electronic computer, ENIAC, to automate ballistics computations during World War II. These two talented engineers dominate the story as it is usually told, but they hardly worked alone. Nearly two hundred young women, both civilian and military, worked on the project as human "computers," performing ballistics computations during the war. Six of them were selected to program a machine that, ironically, would take their name and replace them, a machine whose technical expertise would become vastly more celebrated than their own. The omission of women from the history of computer science perpetuates misconceptions of women as uninterested or incapable in the field. This article retells the history of ENIAC's "invention" with special focus on the female technicians whom existing computer histories have rendered invisible. In particular, it examines how the job of programmer, perceived in recent years as masculine work, originated as feminized clerical labor. The story presents an apparent paradox. It suggests that women were somehow hidden during this stage of computer history while the wartime popular press trumpeted just the opposite -- that women were breaking into traditionally male occupations within science, technology, and engineering. A closer look at this literature explicates the paradox by revealing widespread ambivalence about women's work. While celebrating women's presence, wartime writing minimized the complexities of their actual work. While describing the difficulty of their tasks, it classified their occupations as subprofessional. While showcasing them in formerly male occupations, it celebrated their work for its femininity. Despite the complexities -- and often pathbreaking aspects -- of the work women performed, they rarely received credit for innovation or invention. The story of ENIAC's female computers supports Ruth Milkman's thesis of an "idiom of sex-typing" during World War II -- that the rationale explaining why women performed certain jobs contradicted the actual sexual division of labor. Following her lead, I will compare the actual contributions of these women with their media image. Prewar labor patterns in scientific and clerical occupations significantly influenced the way women with mathematical training were assigned to jobs, what kinds of work they did, and how contemporary media regarded (or failed to regard) this work. This article suggests why previous accounts of computer history did not portray women as significant and argues for a reappraisal of their contributions. Wartime literature characterized World War II as a momentous event in the history of women's employment. In 1943 Wartime Opportunities for Women proclaimed, "It's a Woman's World!" Such accounts hailed unprecedented employment opportunities as men were recruited for combat positions. New military and civilian women's organizations such as the Army's Women's Auxiliary Army Corps (WAAC, converted to full military status in 1943 and renamed the Women's Army Corps [WAC]), the Navy's Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES), and the American Women's Voluntary Services (AWVS) channeled women into a variety of jobs. The press emphasized the role of machines in war and urged women with mechanical knowledge to "make use of it to the best possible purpose." Wartime Opportunities for Women urged: "In this most technical of all wars, science in action is a prime necessity. Engineering is science in action. It takes what the creative mind behind pure science has to offer and builds toward a new engine, product or process." According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Women's Bureau: "The need for women engineers and scientists is growing both in industry and government. . . . Women are being offered scientific and engineering jobs where formerly men were preferred. Now is the time to consider your job in science and engineering. There are no limitations on your opportunities. . . . In looking at the war job opportunities in science and engineering, you will find that the slogan there as elsewhere is 'WOMEN WANTED!'" A multiplicity of books and pamphlets published by the U.S. War Department and the Department of Labor, with such titles as Women in War, American Women in Uniform, Back of the Fighting Front, and Wartime Opportunities for Women...
Conference Paper
We recount some of the most significant and colorful findings of our four-year study of gender issues in the undergraduate computer science program at Carnegie Mellon. We also discuss the subsequent dramatic increase in the number of women in the program. We conclude with recommendations for the most generally useful and effective actions departments can take to attract and retain female students.
Article
Nguyen Dinh Ngoc and Dang Huu were among the senior technology leaders at the Fourth Informatics Week conference and exhibition held in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) in August 1994, an event that swarmed with teenagers, young techies, and businessmen.
Article
Interactive video and computer games belong to the new multimedia culture that is based on the digital computer technology. These electronic games have become increasingly popular since the 1980ies. In the beginning they were mainly played b y y outh and young adults, but in the early 1990ies they also entered the media world of children. This development was closely connected to the introduction of new hand-held v ideo game machines like Nintendo's Gameboy and new television-linked game machines like Sega's Master Drive and Nintendo's Entertainment System. For a while the market of electronic games was split up into two parts: computer games for the PC were predominantly designed for and played by over 14-year-olds whereas video games for hand-held and television-linked game machines were mostly developed for and played by children. This, however, changed in the middle of the nineties, because new game machines were introduced which also aimed at older users (think of Sony's Playstation), and because - on the other hand - personal computers became a more and more common equipment for children, too. Electronic games combine two formerly different phenomena: play and technical m edia. Thus they are at t he same time toys which have changed children's ways of playing, and media which have changed children's media culture. We can also say that video and computer games have blurred the borders between playing and media use. Play is the predominant m ode of children and youth to acquire the world o f new media a nd computer technology. We have empirical evidence that "electronic games are the most frequently used interactive media" (Beentjes et al., 2001, 95) throughout Europe. In a comparative study carried out in 1997 and 1998 it was shown that - on average - children between 6 and 16 devote about half an hour per day to playing electronic games. Those types of PC use that adults usually regard as the more serious ones demand less time: PC not for games about 17 minutes and the Internet about 5 minutes per day (Fig. 1). [Available online at: http://www.gamestudies.org/0301/fromme/]
Article
When we think about the interaction between technology and society, we tend to think in fairly grandiose terms: massive computers invading the workplace, railroad tracks cutting through vast wildernesses, armies of woman and children toiling in the mills. These grand visions have blinded us to an important and rather peculiar technological revolution that has been going on right under our noses: the technological revolution in the home. This revolution has transformed the conduct of our daily lives, but in somewhat unexpected ways. The industrialization of the home was a process very different from the industrialization of other means of production, and the impact of that process was neither what we have been led to believe it was nor what students of the other industrial revolutions would have been led to predict.
Article
Feminist theories of technology have come a long way over the last quarter of a century. The expanding engagement at the intersection of feminist scholarship and science and technology studies (STS) has enriched both fields immeasurably, and I will largely focus my reflections on the literature associated with these sites. I begin by highlighting the continuities as well as the differences between contemporary and earlier feminist debates on technology. Current approaches focus on the mutual shaping of gender and technology, in which technology is conceptualised as both a source and consequence of gender relations. In avoiding both technological determinism and gender essentialism, such theories emphasise that the gender-technology relationship is fluid and situated. These deliberations highlight how processes of technical change can influence gender power relations. A feminist politics of technology is thus key to achieving gender equality. Copyright The Author 2009. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Cambridge Political Economy Society. All rights reserved., Oxford University Press.
Article
The pipeline shrinkage problem concerning women in computer science is a known phenomenon. Although women make up 50% of high school computer science (CS) classes, the percentage of bachelor's degrees in CS awarded to women in the 1993-94 academic year was only 28.4%. At the graduate level, for the academic year 1993-94, the percentages of degrees in CS awarded to women dropped even further: 25.8% at the M.S. level and 15.4% at the Ph.D. level. In addition, for women who become faculty members, the pipeline shrinks through the academic ranks. The percentage of bachelor's degrees awarded in CS to women decreased almost every year over the last decade. In other words, not only does the pipeline shrink from high school to graduate school, but it also shrinks at the bachelor's level. There are a number of reasons why we need to improve the percentage of degrees awarded in CS to women. In short, there is a critical labor shortage in CS and, although women are more than half the population, they are a significantly underrepresented percentage of the population earning CS degrees.
Article
In this article we will explore the unequal gender situation within the specific discipline of Computer Engineering Studies, presenting data from the School of Computer Science at Technical University of Madrid from 1989 to 1999. In the second part we show the results of a qualitative study based on several in-deep interviews to women faculty from different academic positions and divisions in the School. Their perception of women’s situation in their own University and departments, the issues of promotion and career progression and their own experiences in balancing their professional life with the personal and familiar shows very interesting results, some of them specific of the Spanish case comparing with foreign studies. En este artículo exploraremos la desigual situación respecto al género en la carrera universitaria de Ingeniería Informática, presentando los datos de la investigación cuantitativa en la Facultad de Informática de la Universidad Politécnica de Madrid de 1989 a 1999. En la segunda parte llevamos a cabo un estudio cualitativo basado en entrevistas en profundidad a mujeres de la Facultad de Informática en diferentes puestos del escalafón académico. El análisis se centrará en su percepción de la situación de mujeres en su propia universidad y departamento, en los problemas respecto a la promoción y progresión de la carrera universitaria y en sus propias experiencias a la hora de compatibilizar su vida profesional con la personal y familiar. Los resultados de esta investigación muestran algunas interesantes diferencias en el caso español respecto de estudios llevados a cabo en otros países, lo que supone un interesante factor a analizar.
Test-tube women: What future for motherhood
  • A Adam
Adam, A. (1995). Woman and computing in the UK. Communications of the ACM, 38(1), 43. Arditti, R., Klein, R.D. and Minden, Shelley (Eds). (1984). Test-tube women: What future for motherhood. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Technologies of the gendered body: Reading cyborg women
  • A Balsamo
Balsamo, A. (1996). Technologies of the gendered body: Reading cyborg women. Durham and London: Duke University Press.
Situación de género en los Grupos de I+D en TIC
  • E Baringoltz
  • B M Gauna
Baringoltz, E. and Gauna, B.M. (2014). Situación de género en los Grupos de I+D en TIC [Gender situation in R & D Groups in ICT].