Concept note by gjmpzlaezgx


									         FINDING THE “GEM” IN THE

A concept note and motivation for a study on:
     The women and men of Africa’s ICT revolution
  Working hypothesis: A multi-country study in Africa to measure the increased
 participation in the ICT sectors, and in particular of women participants, since the
    introduction of cellular services, telecentres and other service opportunities

                                By Heloise Emdon
                               PO: Southern Africa
                           Acacia & Connectivity Africa
                                        Concept note

 Research the effects of broadening the participation of women in the delivery and
      use of cellular phone services and tele-access using Gender Evaluation
             Methodology: a Pan African study preparation workshop

Date: 15 October 2003


Women and ICTs, Kuala Lumpur, 8.2003: When invited to present a paper on
“Women and ICTs” in the stream the SME sector, in Kuala Lumpur, August 2003 I
presented a paper suggesting that the process of telecommunications reform in South
Africa had created income opportunities for a number of women in poor communities
through running “phoneshops”. The conference was co-sponsored by the COL, IDRC,
GKP, the Malaysian government, the ITU and others.

My own preparation for the conference, to deliver a paper in the Small and Medium
Enterprise track on “Under-Serviced Area Licenses in South Africa:
Window for women’s participation in ICT businesses” helped me identify that there was
sufficient evidence that many women, in particular from poor and disadvantaged
communities, were grasping the business opportunities such as providing public access
telephone services in South Africa’s under-serviced areas. I suggested that a body of
research could evolve to pursue and understand the opportunities that have arisen in
Africa, especially since the bloom of GSM roll-out which has overtaken fixed line

Here was a field rich with data that Acacia would not need to do “Action Research” in
but could fund typical socio-economic/market studies. I was, however, at pains to suggest
what methodology such a study should follow to reflect the decisions that women had
made to participate as service providers in this study, and included in my presentation the
Gender Planning Approach, the Caroline Moser methodology which looks at the practical
and strategic gender needs of women, as well as acknowledges the triple role of women
and therefore provides a theoretical lens that helps describe the decisions that women
make. (My presentation is at www…KIKE just add the URL here….)I had not yet come
across a methodology that looks specifically at women and ICTs and these aspects of
empowerment (…I soon did!)

Nasneen Sultana of the Grameen telecentres project (attached to the Garmeen Phone
project) was also presenting a paper in the same stream and I was struck by the
availability of knowledge on the Grameen experience, with little or no documentation of
the African revolution among women and ICTs. And the Grameenphone project has
succeeded despite poor regulation, poor infrastructure roll-out, lack of interconnection
between the fixed line and cellular operators in the early days.

Africa has its own story, we just need to go out there and tell it.
At the conference I met up with practitioners of the Gender Evaluation Methodology
(GEM) APC Women who were making use of GEM during its first trial year, they were
     Natasha Primo who heads WomensNet in South Africa and a former Acacia
        research partner,
     Alice was leaving her FemNet job in Nairobi to become the project leader of the
        newly Acacia-funded CIPP project, and will continue to work in the field of
        women and ICTs in her new role.
     as well as the “author”, Chat GarcÍa Ramilo of APC Women, based in the
        Philippines, who had delivered a paper on the methodology and the field tests to
        that date (www……..)

The IDRC had funded the development of GEM through APC Women (PO: Gilles
Cliché) and the methodology has been put to field tested with results of this due this end
of this year. GEM researchers from around the globe met in October to discuss the field
results. I will elaborate more about the methodology in the next section.

I also met gender planning specialist and researcher Angela Nakafeero, from Wougnet in
Uganda who told me how gender planning (a Carolyne Moser methodology) had been
updated and added to by the more recent works of Zambian gender specialist Sarah
Longwe. Angela said she often like the Longwe framework in certain circumstances.

I subsequently discovered that Sarah Longwe was a resource person who workshoped the
GEM concepts, and as such the GEM framework seems to be the framework that would
be very important to use in such a study.

Excerpt from Chat Ramillo’s presentation:

The methodology in short:

GEM is a guide to integrating gender analysis into evaluations of ICT initiatives.

ICT use generally is increasing everywhere. In particular, women are using ICTs to
strengthen their organization and movement building at the local, regional and global
levels. However, ICTs can also be a potential threat to women. ICTs can be used in ways
that replicate or perpetuate gender stereotypes and biases, and can have unintended
negative impacts on women. Gender evaluation methodologies therefore can be used to
ensure that ICTs are used in ways that transform gender biases and roles and do not
simply reproduce and replicate existing ones.

As more and more of today’s development work and money is channelled into projects
that employ ICTs, their effects on women are of great importance. For women, the
accessibility of ICTs requires adequate equipment, information, financing, organization,
training and time. Evaluation of ICT development work is therefore critical to ensure
gender equality and women’s empowerment.
Gender Analytical Framework
Women’s Empowerment Cycle
                              Control (and/or empowerment)





                                        from Sara Longwe
The Gender Evaluation Methodology (GEM) tool and background is up on the web at:

It is not the final product as it is under review until after our global trainers network in
June 2004.

South Africa, September 2003: On my return Edith Adera, IDRC ESARO, visited
South Africa for the Outcome Mapping training workshops and she, Natasha and I had a
shot working session to discuss the idea of doing a study in several African countries.
During the Outcome Mapping training Jennifer Radloff of APC Women, based in Cape
Town, as well as the new project leader for the APC Civil Society Information and Policy
Programme (CIPP) also funded by Acacia, Alice Munyane, were involved in the OM

We had a meeting over lunch with Steve Song to discuss the possibility of such a study
and suggested that if we were to do a multi-country study that we should hold a workshop
in Q4 2003/4, suggested venue Cape Town, because that is where the APCWomen’s
training desk is under Jennifer Radloff, in order to develop a multi-country proposal and
to attach to it a GEM training workshop to bring the researchers that are nominated to
work in these countries upto speed with it.

In consultation, Mike Jensen suggested that we study the following countries because of
their growth in cellular, as well as others that have demonstrated innovative public access
through fixed line and franchising:
     South Africa
     Uganda
     Tanzania
     Kenya
     Camaroon
     Senegal
     Nigeria
     Morocco
     Egypt
     And by exception Mozambique

Ottawa February 2003, July 2003 and South Africa, October 2003: Richard Fuchs
had met the director of the African Gender Institute, Jane Bennett, in Ottawa in February
2003 when she presented a study for the Gender Unit.

Richard was clearly impressed and emailed the following on 13/02/03:


 It was great to meet you. Your presentation was an absolute tour de
force. I learned so very much and your interesting way of moving from
idea to story is a very effective way of helping people understand, learn
and care about the outcome. Bravo!!!
 As I said, I'd be interested in having our ICT4D program at IDRC
discuss the possibility of doing some work with you and the African
Gender Institute. As a starting point, it might be interesting to think
about "gendering ICTs" or how boys and girls, men and women,come
to integrate this new "cool" technology as part of their gender role
identities, mediated by class, race, age, language and all the rest.
We've worked on just this type of thing with street kids in Ecuador and
Colombia from a "self-esteem" lens, but approaching this through
gender would be really interesting.

 I've cc'd my colleagues Heloise Emdon (in MidRand) and Nancy
Smyth (in Ottawa) who I hope you'll have a chance to meet. And
again, my 2 hours on the 14th floor this AM was among the most
rewarding time I've spent there in my 24 months at IDRC.

 Thanks so much for an engaging lecture and fine performance.


When both Edith and I were in Ottawa for the ICT4D-UNDP meetings in July, Richard
implored both of us separately to contact Jane and so when Edith came to South Africa
we tried, but Jane was on sabbatical and could not be contacted and was clearly in hiding
because no attempt to get hold of her by email or phone worked.

(Richard also had strongly suggested that I make the trip to the ICT & Gender conference
which I had been committed to go to in March but which had been postponed because of
SARS. August was around the corner and I was somewhat reluctant. Nancy too
encouraged me to come, and made me understand that the names she had put forward
were not necessarily of gender activists or experts, but with practical exposure. I tell you
this because the mix and networking have obviously created new programming
opportunities worth exploring.)

I had mentioned to both Natasha Primo and Jennifer Radloff that I was in search of Jane
Bennett. Jennifer informed me she knew her well and they regularly met to discuss
matters. She invited me to meet with Jane when next in Cape Town.

As an aside, the other Southern African project of ours which has strong participation of
women, and is also SME-based, is the Cape Sonke township tourism route under project
leadership of Denise Biggs, consultant, and Prof Andy Bytheway, University of the
Western Cape Information Sciences, Commerce Faculty. While Sonke gets wonderful
press (even IDRC press) for its women’s participation, I had expressed my concerns to
both of the project leaders that I saw wonderful SME development and little if any
innovation with ICTs despite a wealth of opportunities, including the use of SMS
amongst a network of entrepreneurs, and or with tourism clients. (It was an ex-SEL
project and clearly still being implemented in that mode, despite being moved into the
Acacia stable with a few added PCs). I had met up with Andy Bytheway in September
and he implored me to come to a project implementation and Sonke forum meeting on
the first Tuesday of October to bear my concerns. It was then that I took the opportunity
to meet other potential research partners in Cape Town and Jane Bennet was on top of the
list. I do think the Sonke story is worth being written up in GEM terms though.
Jane Bennett and Jennifer Radloff met me for a morning of discussion in which I shared
the research ideas so far and Jane, who is esteemed for her strong theoretical inputs, was
extremely excited about the ideas and how these had evolved. Jane, who is a gender
planning expert (the Moser methodology I previously mentioned) has not previously
worked with GEM but was keen to explore. However, she remarked that a study of this
nature would have to have a broad-based sample of men and women, and that the GEM
studies would then best be applied to women respondents. In other words, the research
would gather general information about the broadened participation in the ICT sector due
to the delivery of new services, operators, “liberalization”, and that the particular stories
of women would then be developed using, for instance, the GEM, which is a strong
“qualitative tool” to gather “stories” rather than statistics.

As such, Bennett felt that the gender researchers should work with researchers who knew
and understood the policy and regulatory environment because this context needed to be
understood in order to make sense of the opportunities or lack of them in the observed.

She also felt strongly that the study should also look at women using the services and
later Jennifer Radloff sent the following excerpt from a recent book by documentary,
novelist and South African poet, Antjie Krog recent book "A Change of Tongue" she
writes about cell phones in a poor rural area she visited and finds the priority of spending
in the area she visited was - 1st food, 2nd airtime. One of the major reasons was to keep
in touch with family in the urban areas and to ask for money and food when needed.

I mentioned to Bennett that LINK Centre, our other Acacia research partner working on
regulatory and policy environment in 2004/5 intends to do large market studies in order
to change the perspective of the continued ITU standard of measuring fixed line per
population to determine density, but wants to look at others means, noteably GSM
because it now represents more than double the number of telephone lines in Africa than
fixed lines, as well as other services such as VSAT (which it already in part is doing
through the Acacia-funded VSAT registry and socio-economic study for CATIA).

LINK Centre Research Director, Alison Gillwald confirmed that this fieldwork was
planned for in year 2 but that they had not envisaged such a broad scope of countries nor
in particular gender methodology.

Uganda October 2003: Edith has also had a follow-up meeting with Angela Nakafeero
and Dortothy Okello both from WOUGNET. I add this note from her record of her
meeting with them:
“ extent to which telecom reforms have provided opportunities for women to participate
in the sector as service providers and with what effects.
-telecom reforms and empowerment of women as beneficiaries/users of services
(Dorothy/Angela thought this is an important aspect to include).
 *GEM methodology will be used to undertake the assessment.
*WOUGNET is one of the organizations that have tested GEM and have internal
capacity to undertake studies using GEM.
*Possible project ideas (for ESARO Pipeline):
-gender mainstreaming in National ICT Policy (currently ICT policy is very weak on
-ICTs and women parliamentarians - capacity building to enhance informed debates in
parliament, research and linkages with rural women to bring their voices to debates in
parliament through women legislators.
*WOUGNET to identify 2 persons to join Africa gender research team (Angela) - they've
identified Angea and Dorothy who would be the persons attending the workshop.” Ends

Senegal October 2003:
Alioune Camara and ENDA That any other projects, notably the Gender ICT Indicators
project being developed by take note and plan for participation in this larger Pan study.


It is here proposed that we fund a workshop for developing a socio-economic-market
study and the use of Gender Evaluation Methodology in

      South Africa
      Uganda
      Tanzania
      Kenya
      Camaroon
      Senegal
      Nigeria
      Morocco
      Egypt
      And by exception Mozambique

with researchers representing each country, as well as the resources of the GEM APC
Women, African Institute for Gender Studies (AIG, Jane Bennett), LINK Centre and
relevant researchers from ICT Policy Africa! Network to develop a proposal for Acacia
with a working title of: The women and men of Africa’s ICT revolution.

Working hypothesis: A multi-country study in Africa to measure the increased
participation in the ICT sectors, and in particular of women participants, since the
introduction of cellular services, telecentres and other service opportunities

Furthermore, that remainder of CAD 50 000 of the IDRC-DBSA RSP fund for
developing new project ideas be allocated to support this proposal writing and GEM
training workshop, to be held in either Cape Town or Johannesburg (the latter reduces
costs, and could then be managed as an internal RSP project).
Project fit:

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