Academic journal article Journal of International Technology and Information Management

Communication through Social Technologies: A Study of Israeli Women

Academic journal article Journal of International Technology and Information Management

Communication through Social Technologies: A Study of Israeli Women

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT

Social technologies have changed the way we communicate allowing users to interact, share knowledge, reach out to friends and family, keep up with the news, and even promote and support a business. A study of Israeli women was conducted to determine how social technologies platforms--Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Google+--are used and the benefits realized. Women worldwide face challenges including economic, educational, health, and political. Israel women, like women in every other country in the world, are challenged with gender inequity. Do women who use social technologies believe that these platforms provide empowerment leading to greater success? This paper discusses Israel's global gender gap scores and rankings in four categories as compared with 144 other countries and reports the results of a study of the use of social technologies by Israeli women in the workplace.

KEYWORDS: Israel, social technologies, social media, gender gap, women's empowerment, communication

INTRODUCTION

The gender gap and women's empowerment are issues that have recently gained international attention. Women worldwide face economic, educational, health, and political inequalities, and Israel is no exception.

Cultural differences complicate the gender gap issue, but the internet and social technologies may level the playing field as it extends the reach of communication far beyond a country's borders and provides all who have access to the internet a voice unlike ever before. Along with the positive side of social technologies, users must also be prepared for the dark side. "It's a rare business owner or professional who hasn't encountered an Internet takedown. Consumers themselves have access to each other through social technology platforms. Even if they are using it just to vent steam, their complaint can travel the world" (Diamond, 2015). How complaints or negative comments are handled can make the difference. Address the person by name, express the concern, and try to correct the issue, but do not get into a public war. "Increasing positive vibes is great, but you get a bigger bang for your buck if you reduce the negative ones (Diamond, 2015). Despite the fear one may have of negative comments or personal attacks," the potential benefits are too great to ignore.

Although women in every country face inequalities, the gap has slowly been narrowing for most countries with expectations that the pace will pick up through awareness and a continued international focus.

This paper takes a look at the gender gap and social technologies as a means of empowering women. A need for this study is confirmed by Qureshi (2015) indicating that the effects of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in improving people's lives should be studied at the individual, organizational, country, regional and world levels.

It is estimated that women could increase their income globally by up to 76 percent if the employment participation gap and the wage gap between women and men were closed. This is calculated to have a global value of USD 17 trillion (Actionaid, 2015).

An ongoing global study of 24 countries across five continents entitled "Women's Empowerment through Social Technologies," is intended to identify global uses of social technologies in the workplace and benefits realized that may lead to empowerment and equality. The results of a survey of Israeli women are reported. Conclusions and implications follow.

RELATED LITERATURE

The gender gap, women's empowerment, and social technologies have been widely studied (World Economic Forum, 2015; Nord, et al 2014; Gholipour, et al, 2010; Nazneen, et al, 2014; Cornwall and Anyidoho, 2010; Thapa, 2014), yet there is sparse literature on the effect of social technologies on women's empowerment. In Israel, this has been complicated in the wake of ongoing suffrage.

The Gender Gap. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.