Women in the Digital Space (and AI). Looking into Central Europe. 

AI affects a growing number of areas of everyday life, ranging from leisure time to work. But does it impact women and men in the same way? Do women benefit from the opportunities offered by the digital space, or does it disadvantage them? Our colleague Malwina Talik was a lead author and researcher of a GLOBSEC/CEE study that analyzed these questions with a focus on four Central European countries: Austria, Czechia, Poland, and Slovakia. 

You can read its findings here or in the document below. 

Women in Digital Space and AI. Looking into Central Europe

Major findings: 

  • Although the digital literacy varies greatly across the region, women benefit from the digital solutions much below their potential. 
  • Gendered cyberviolence remains one of the most daunting challenges for women as digital users, which often stops them from expressing their views or using certain platforms; monitoring of 20 Instagram accounts of public figures in Central Europe has also confirmed the global trend that female politicians are subjected to disproportionally high volume of abusive comments. 
  • Female experts in the IT and AI fields are highly underrepresented. However, this is not necessarily (only) due to hiring discrimination or the glass ceiling effect, as seen media or politics. There are rather too few women with the necessary skills to enter the digital field in the first place. 
  • Girls’ and young women’s career choices are affected by stereotypes existing in our societies and too few visible role models. The influence of parents and friends has often a crucial impact on whether girls and young women decide to study IT. 
  • The gender pay gap in the ICT sector in CE is much wider than out of it. 
  • It all starts with education, role models and our perceptions of the IT and AI fields. If we want to bring about a change, it has to start in our societies’ mindest and in our educational systems.  
  • Lifelong learning needs to become everyday practice regardless of whether we are digital users or creators of the digital space. 
  • A blessing is disguise is that IT experts are desperately missing in the EU which means that the industry is now more open to women.