Exploring gender biases in information and communication technologies
: an analysis of women’s experiences in the tech industry

  • Joanna Joyce da Cunha Boavida Cawley (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


Over recent decades, the use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has increased dramatically. The potential benefits of ICT use on women’s socio-economic, psychological and political empowerment has been outlined by several authors. However,the growing importance of ICTs is characterised by a substantial gender imbalance in the creation of technological products and services. The technology industry continues to bemale-dominated, with women under-represented at all levels in the sector. This study analyses research questions involving the potential empowerment of women via their useof ICTs and their representation in the technology sector. The empirical work examines the experiences of eight women working in the technology industry in Europe and the UnitedStates. Data was collected using semi-structured interviews, and via qualitative analysis, significant themes were identified. Eleven themes emerged, and results showed a numberof facilitators and barriers to job satisfaction, well-being, career advancement, and empowerment. Although many of the findings support existing literature on gender,technology, ICTs, empowerment, and the workplace, the objective of this research was not to generalise findings, but rather to give voice to women working in the tech sector withthe aim of understanding their needs and what they believe is important to create positive, equitable, and sustainable changes to the industry which benefit all employees, regardlessof gender identity. Additionally, this thesis identifies important themes for further investigation by researchers, as well as significant implications for companies andmanagers.
Date of Award13 Jan 2021
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorCátia Ferreira (Supervisor)


  • Women in tech
  • Information and communication technologies
  • Networks
  • Empowerment
  • Tech industry


  • Mestrado em Ciências da Comunicação

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