Digital Technology and Exclusion of Women: Occupational Segregation and Deconstruction of Stereotypes

Monday, 11 July 2016: 14:15
Location: Hörsaal I (Neues Institutsgebäude (NIG))
Oral Presentation
Manoj JENA, Department of Sociology, Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi, India
The new technology particularly Digital/Information technology are now central to our culture and consciousness. It is not only playing an important role in terms of restructuring the economic and social structure but also reshaping work and employability relationships. One may argue that, since 1970’s onwards the expansion of information technology has impacted our everyday life activities phenomenally. The speed, flows of information and communication technologies are now central to our economics. One may further argue that we have entered in to the Information Society, where informatics is the main component of Indian social structure. Many of our economic functions are increasingly organized around information networks and its associated technologies leading to multidimensional effects on the Indian society. Services like Information Technology Enable Services(ITeS) offshoring, outsourcing, and the new notions of work have significantly influenced labour and Employment relations in India. Such changes have led to labour market flexibilities and have created differential impacts on social groups including women thereby reinforcing institutionally entrenched inequalities.

In this context, the paper tries to understand the exclusionary nature of the Digital technology particularly in case of Women, and also explores how the existing structural inequality is reinforced within the organizational set up of the Digital/IT industry. Secondly, it highlights on issues like occupational segregation, entrenched inequality and marginalization of women within and outside the industry while focusing on gender stereotypes, particularly feminization of work in this sector

On the whole, it tries to locate how these entrenched inequalities and gender divisions are influencing Information Technology Enable Service work patterns and employability thereby leading to increased insecurity among women within the industry in terms of their access to jobs, promotions, work timings, on-site mobility etc.