Horizon Research Publishing has published on the journal "Sociology and Anthropology", Vol 2 No 4, the article "Information and Communication Technologies: An Agent of Social Change for Rural Women in Odisha" by Subrata S. Satapathy.
After having identified women's limited access to Information Communication Technology (ICT) within rural communities as a present and pressing issue, the author analyses the social and cultural aspects of the dynamics underlying ICT's penetration in rural communities in India, highlighting how rural women could benefit from the combination of knowledge and ICT.
Information and Communication Technologies: An Agent of Social Change for Rural Women in Odisha
Subrata S. Satapathy - PG Department of Sociology, Utkal University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
"Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have ushered in the new era and possess the prospective to generate educational and job opportunities, awareness on the basic available health care facilities, legal provisions, government programmes and welfare schemes etc. The benefits amassed from the combination of knowledge and ICT should not be confined to the upper strata of the society but need to liberally flow to all the sections of the female population. The extent of areas in which ICT can put a larger control in the hands of women is extensive and constantly increasing, from managing water distribution at the village-level to standing for local elections and having admittance to enduring learning opportunities. With such an unmatched prowess, ICTs definitely can bring a social change in the rural hinterlands of Odisha, a state in India. A large portion of rural women in the state are reeling under poverty and lack awareness. They are absorbed in the farm sector (which doesn’t promise a hefty return, always) and are unskilled manual laborers. The socio cultural barriers discourage their public participation and decision making ventures. Socially, majority of women in rural Odisha are tied up by age-old traditions. Disparity in women's access to and participation in all communication systems as well as lack of mobilization proves to be a roadblock in their emancipation. It is in this context that this paper wants to examine the underpinning dynamism of culture and technology and if the former fosters or hinders ICT penetration in rural areas of Odisha."