I recently learned about a subset of the Federal Communications Commission called WISENET: Women in ICTs Shared Intelligence Network. The network exists entirely online and aims to aggregate knowledge, experiences and data related to women in ICTs. In their own words,
WISENET (Women in ICTs Shared Excellence Network) is a convening platform that aims to leverage the experience, resources and connections of the international ICT community to better the situation of women, their communities and their countries. The platform will include the redesigned blog, news, events, and research.
WISENET is a key part of the International Bureau’s Women’s Initiative: Going Mobile and Connecting Women. Through the Initiative, we hope to collaborate on how to best use ICTs for development and motivate women to pursue careers in technology.
One exceptionally useful feature of the website is a oft-updated congregation of news links regarding women in ICTs—a topic which receives far too little media coverage. I’ve had a difficult time in the past finding news articles or current events relevant to our class discussions, and the first few links I tried here were great. The WISENET site also features a blog with posts from high-ranking administrators at various NGOs and government offices. Finally, there’s an impressive compilation of research on gender and ICT-related issues. More than anything else it looks like a way for English-speaking development workers to share ideas rather than a hands-on consumption-side ICT tool, but it’s still an incredibly useful resource. I have no way to tell how much traffic the site gets, but I hope someone out there is making use of it.