Connectivity: A New Economic and Educational Opportunity for Women

The female gender has a new economic power: Access to the internet. Public and private entities seek to reduce the gender digital divide with initiatives that allow women to develop in their personal and professional lives.

The Woman Post | María Carolina Rivero

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The COVID-19 pandemic has hastened the use of technology, but it has also accentuated gaps by emphasizing inequalities. According to the ECLAC Economic Outlook 2020 report, more than 40 million households are without access to the internet. However, rural women have a greater impact on connectivity.

The Digital Divide Versus the Economic Divide

On the other hand, the low educational level of the female agrarian gender is the most vulnerable group and they are less connected to the digital world. This brings with it a disadvantage because barriers to the development of rural women have increased. This sector does not have any type of technology, nor access to connectivity, nor smartphones, even do not implement digital platforms. However, the Latin American Center for Rural Development (RIMISP) develops training strategies so that they have coverage and services.

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Currently, the COVID-19 pandemic hastened the process for women to have valuable digital tools. This is to reduce the digital divide that exists, however, every day they face extra obstacles to use it and to participate online. That is why projects and initiatives are needed to achieve the success that is achieved by closing the digital divide.

A recent study called Digital Report 2021 published by We Are Social, a leader in social media management, reveals that users have grown rapidly. In recent decades the increase has been more than 13% year-on-year, that is, 490 million new users. The platforms Facebook, YouTube, and WhatsApp are the most implemented worldwide. In addition, the data collected shows the expansion of social networks, of which 45% look for it for brand information and 40% use it for work purposes.

On the other hand, the expansion of e-commerce was 77% and shoppers purchase food and personal care products every month. In addition, notoriety in gaming has increased significantly among generations, 90% of Generation Z and 67% of Baby Boomers.


Women Entrepreneurs With Connectivity in Colombia

Public and private entities seek to reduce the gender digital divide, with initiatives that allow women to develop in their personal and professional lives. MinTIC together with the Bavaria Foundation designed the "Enterprising Bavaria" program to train the female gender in sectors of financial education and digital content design.

Both entities managed to link 25,000 women and reveal that there is a 30% increase in their income and 15% more jobs. In addition, 70% express that they implement digital channels to sell their products.

On the other hand, they obtained access of 12,000 women to the "By TIC Woman" program, which aims to provide support in Productive Projects of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). In addition, they donated mobile voice and data plans to 20,000 entrepreneurs for 15 months with the "Last Mobile Mile" initiative. The two entities seek to generate strategic alliances to contribute to the cessation of the digital gender divide.

In short, digitalization, social welfare, the economy, and culture are key study factors that give the female gender the impetus to achieve gender equality. That is why men and women must adapt to the changes of egalitarian intervention, to face it as an opportunity and not as a barrier.

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