Historically, women have always tended to do more piecemeal work – which fits around home and childcare – than men have, whether in “developed” or “developing countries”*. How do internet-enabled phones (or smartphones) fit in here? What kinds of quick, on the move income generation can these devices enable for women? And what implications does this have? We (Caribou Digital) recently did a big research study on digital lives” in Ghana, Kenya and Uganda for MasterCard Foundation as a client. I wrote another blog on it here. Our main question was – what are the internet-enabled or dataphone uses of young men and women ages 18-25 living on under $2 a day? (I’m trying to avoid the term smartphone again as that implies something top of the range, hi-tech).
Looking forward to supervising my first MSc dissertations in the Department of Media and Communications at LSE (previously, I supervised on the MSc Management of Information Systems and Digital Innovation in the Department of Management and even before that at the Global Development Institute in Manchester). If students initially seem intimidated with the prospect of writing 10,000 words, I always tell them it’s an amazing and unique experience, pretty much a carte blanche to write objectively and critically, without having to toe an organizational line (like this blog, I guess, but with more references!). My ten dissertation students this year have varied and fascinating topics, from analyzing Prime Minister Modi’s communications strategy, to the localization of a Chinese reality TV format in Korea, the political economy of media industries and the political identity of Democrats Abroad in London during the US Primary Elections.