From Visions to Reality: Changing Women's Perspectives at the Village Hall

Herman, Clem (2001). From Visions to Reality: Changing Women's Perspectives at the Village Hall. ACM SIGCAS Computers and Society, 31(4) pp. 15–22.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1145/572306.572310

Abstract

From the introduction: The experiences of the Women's Electronic Village Hall (WEVH) a community based ICT access project based in the British city of Manchester present an illustration of how dominant gender-technology discourses have been successfully challenged within a women only training environment. This paper draws on my own experience as one of the founders and the Director of the WEVH for eight years. The WEVH was one of the very first ICT access centres in Britain, mad occupied a unique position, acting as a model for other women's ICT initiatives and influencing the development and proliferation of other community based ICT initiatives over the past decade. There were two main motivating forces behind the setting up of the WEVH - the first was a shared vision of the potential for ICTs/telematics to be used as a tool to combat social exclusion and the second was a feminist commitment to redressing the inequalities and under-representation of women in computing. Both these perspectives formed an important backdrop to the growth and development of the organisation and continue to inform its strategic plans.

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