UN International Day of Women and Girls in Science, 11 February

I took an interest in writing about media representation of women in technology for my dissertation last year, because of my own personal lived experiences and perspectives. As a millennial, I observed that most of the technological products and services use by youth today began with my generation, such as the first IBM Simon smartphone. However, in Namibia where I grew up, girls were encouraged to only play with dolls, whilst boys had the opportunity to be exposed to legos, cars and computers. At secondary school, subjects such as mathematics and science were pursued by boys and needle work and life skills by girls. The conditioned mindset as a millennial from different factors including parents, school and religious influences was that technology is the men playground, where women are not welcomed and do not thrive or become successful, and the media under-representation of women in technology only exacerbates the problem even more, because one can only become what they see.

Happy International Day for Women and Girls in STEM
My office at home while writing on my blog

With that said, I have always been fascinated about STEM. My passion for technology grew more in 2020, during the pandemic, when it became evident that advanced technologies were able to save millions of lives, with the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, being the fastest in global history. Examples of how technologies enabled the public health response are the home Covid test kits and the test and trace system used during the pandemic. Also the first year of my degree was solely online using Microsoft Teams collaboration platform for studying and Zoom software for hybrid working from home. All this was possible because of advanced technology and the Internet, and it became the new normal for everyone around the world.

Drafting the layout of my living room on my tablet

The first time I learned how to use computer languages such as HTML and CSS was during the Digital Media Design and Development course at Birkbeck, University of London as part of my degree. It was the first time I learned how to do basic coding and as the result of this course, I discovered a new interest and passion for coding. I was inspired by the potential and applicability in almost every field, from structuring, designing, solving complex problems, managing and analysing large datasets. Therefore, this inspired me to follow a career as a multifaceted writer, who can cover different topics, with aspirations to specialise on technologies.

Although extensive research has been carried out on women in technology, little has been written about research which adequately focuses on women technology writers. Who gets to construct the narratives in the UK mainstream media and from what perspectives? Do we live in a fair and equal society where every voice is heard regardless of gender, class and ethnicity? For example, when it comes to research technologies that are going to change the way societies function and operate in the future, women should be given a seat at the table. The mainstream media should emphasise on the importance of including diverse women in new technologies that will have the largest impact on our society. These game-changing technologies have the potential to transform the world as it is known today, therefore these are the gaps that women need to urgently fill in our societies.