By Dr Tom Abram
Our latest research piece, published here, looks at the careers of three women born nearly 60 years apart, “… just a few of the many inspiring women who broke down the societal barriers of the working world, whilst pursuing their own careers in the IT industry”. It was written by an AIT volunteer, Sophia, a recent humanities graduate, who concludes that over a period of “increasing emancipation of the role and status of women … challenges people face can be similar, but they have changed over time … and that …They offer an excellent insight … as a possible explanation as to why more did not get involved.”
It is a really interesting people story that says a lot about the industry but, I find myself asking:
- Do the achievements of these three really show that things have changed?
- Is it such gender-biased treatment that puts women off the industry?
- What is in our Archive of oral history that might help solve the problem?
I don’t claim the following be a rigorous analysis of the problem, which others have done well on many occasions but perhaps some anecdotal observations from my review of our recent interviews with high achieving women in IT which might shed some light.
Have things changed?
Does gender based treatment put women off IT?
How can we change things?
I wonder if the industry needs to do a bit more image development as a caring profession that makes a difference? Certainly, it’s a message that AIT wants to make more visible.