The Gender Gap in the Digital Era:Reaching Algorithmic Fairness and Technological Inclusivity in Network Society

Arısoy-Gedik, Cansu
İlkay Ceyhan, Ahmet
Despite women’s early contributions to computer science, the field became seen as male-dominated, especially after 1980s marketing of computers mainly to men, reducing female participation. Yet, figures like Ada Lovelace and the female ENIAC programmers, with backgrounds in math and physics, significantly influenced the digital world. This article explores the ongoing gap in digital skills and literacy between genders, focusing on how biases in technology affect women. It highlights the achievements of notable women in tech, from Angela Robles, who created the first e-book reader in 1949, to Hedy Lamarr’s work on GPS and Wi-Fi, and Margaret Hamilton’s role in the Apollo 11 mission. The article shows the importance of including women in technology, supporting the idea that their participation is key to fair and dynamic digital societies, as suggested by Manuel Castells’ network society. The article reviews the McKinsey report on job changes due to automation, showing a likely rise in technology-related jobs, and discusses the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) forecast of increased tech spending from 2015 to 2030, noting many new jobs in IT services. This study highlights the shift in future job skills towards creativity, critical thinking, and negotiation, along with technical skills, and notes the WEF’s prediction of 6.1 million new jobs in areas like data science, AI, and cloud computing. In conclusion, the article advocates for concerted efforts to bridge the gender gap in digital skills, mitigate biases in algorithms, and support inclusivity in the digital era. It underscores the imperative of empowering women in technology to harness their talents and perspectives for driving innovation and equitable socio-economic development ​
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