Conference proceedings article

Towards a deeper understanding of gender barriers in the IT business

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Author list: DANIELSSON U, PERSSON SLUMPI T, DANIELSSON U, PERSSON SLUMPI T

Publication year: 2006


Abstract

In this paper we analyze barriers for women to enter and take on professional roles in the IT business. It is argued that earlier research concerning these barriers only has scratched on the surface and to be able to take appropriate meassures a deeper understanding of the foundation the barriers rests upon is needed. In this paper concepts from gender research, the so called four relation types: power, production, emotion, and symbols; are introduced and used in analyzing the barriers identified in earlier research as well as in case studies of IT professionals and youths at a IT high school. This analyzes shows that gender regimes in our society, when it comes to the IT business are, more or less, hostile to women. It also shows that using these four concepts adds a new dimension to the discussion concerning the under-representation of women in IT business. By focusing on relations, measures can be designed to target specific problematic relations instead of targeting a problem that is a complex of two or more relations.


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