Research Papers

Abstract

Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are increasingly being recognised as vital tools with regards to the empowerment of marginalised individuals. Specifically, we investigate the impact of mobile phone use on the social inclusion of marginalised women in Nigeria. Our discussion focuses on what these women are able to achieve with their mobile phones and the implication of these achievements on their ability to effectively participate in society. We draw on a qualitative ethnographic study of resettled northern women in the southern city of Lagos to understand how mobile phone use contributes to their social inclusion. From our analysis we derive valuable capabilities such as to generate income, to be financially included, to maintain social relationships etc that are enabled for these women through mobile phone use as well as the social and environmental conditions that influence the realization of the capabilities. We illustrate how women exercise their agency to use mobile phones in ways that enhance their wellbeing and overall effective participation in this new society. Our findings contribute to the discourse on the role of ICT in the process of social inclusion for women

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