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Gender and ICT for sustainable growth
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Human Work Science.
2012 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The aim of this paper is to critically scrutinize the discursive connections between gender, development of ICT, and sustainable growth. Sustainable growth is generally depicted as the coming together of economical, social, and ecological sustainability of growth, for instance through a shift to a so called knowledge economy (cf. Krings 2011). Yesterday, the only focus was on economic growth, we are told. Today however, this aspect of growth will have to be restricted by both ecological and social sustainability. In days of insurgence and rebellion all around the globe, of ecological and major capitalist crisis this might seem as a very wise consideration. If the capitalist system has inflicted serious damage upon itself, let us then rescue it from itself (cf. European Commission 2010). Governmental agencies in Sweden, as the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth (Tillväxtverket) and the Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems (Vinnova) actively work with promoting a more sustainable growth through a gender perspective (see for instance Granhilda and Granat Thorslund 2011). Many Swedish ICT-research projects also get funding from Vinnova, and the agency actively promotes a gender perspective in the funded research environments.Drawing on critical studies on the development of ICT (e.g. Dyer-Witheford 1999; Wajcman 2004), my own research on gender and ICT-research, and through a critical reading of documents from ICT-research organizations, Vinnova, Tillväxtverket, and the European Commission, I will scrutinize the use of gender and gender equality for promoting sustainable economic growth with the use of ICT. How is gender and ICT reified in relation to and subjected to economic growth? How is gender supposed to lead to better innovations within ICT R&D? How is capital enclosing struggles, in this case for gender equity and equality, by subjecting it to the robustness of ICT R&D, and in extension to economic growth? Possible main results will be that social sustainability is subjected to economic growth through the reification of gender and ICT, and openings for securing a critical gender perspective in times of subjugation of gender perspectives for economic growth. Relevance for the conference is most notably the scrutinizing of how particular democracy struggles gets reified and disarmed by strategies for sustainable growth.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Research subject
Gender and Technology
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-38822Local ID: d54f5d5e-3d77-4b41-af69-cf9617f7d206OAI: diva2:1012323
ICTs and Society-Conference : Critique, Democracy and Philosophy in 21st Century Information Society. Towards Critical Theories of Social Media 02/05/2012 - 04/05/2012
Godkänd; 2012; 20120510 (ysko)Available from: 2016-10-03 Created: 2016-10-03Bibliographically approved

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