Archives, gender and technology

Subject:  Multidisciplinary
A woman in front of a wall with projections of source code and binary code

To celebrate International Women’s Day, the UOC Library presents a new dossier on art and technology from a gender perspective.

In 2011, an article published in The New York Times started the debate about the gender divide in Wikipedia. A few days later, Sue Gardner, former executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation, joined the discussion with a new entry in her personal blog. Six years have passed, but the debate continues: women are under-represented as editors (fewer than 11%) and subjects (only 16.8% of biographies) in the large, open-source community encyclopaedia.

This lack of female representation and diversity reproduces social inequalities and also contributes to gender bias. To celebrate 8 March and as part of the Art+Feminism 2018 actions and the round table “Wikipedia as a battle ground”, the UOC library has compiled a new dossier containing resources relating to archives, gender and technology: Digital initiatives and organizations that work to increase the visibility of work by women. Recommended bibliography. The UOC’s own projects which study the social and cultural transformations in the development of new technologies.

A Wikipedia edit-a-thon

Art related entries dedicated to women in Wikipedia only represent 27.5%, compared to 72.4% dedicated to men. The Art+Feminism 2018 initiative, which the UOC is participating in, aims to increase this figure. On 10 March, at Sala Apolo in Barcelona, a group of editors will meet to create or complete the biographies of more than twenty different artists. Thanks to this event, artists with well-established careers such as Alba Corral, Ingrid Guardiola and Conxita Herrero will also have their own entry in Wikipedia.

In the UOC Library's new dossier you will find information on all of these artists, as well as on the organizers of this initiative, such as Liquen Data Lab and Visual404.

A digital archive and the first women’s museum

The new dossier will also feature organizations that work to offset the under-representation of women in the art world. This is the case with Feminist Art Base, a digital archive dedicated exclusively to feminist art, with works by over 300 artists and the Fraenmuseum Bonn, which claims to be the first women’s museum in the world.

UOC projects

The dossier describes our University's contribution in research: the Gender and ICT research group, GenTIC, which analyses gender inequality in the field of new technologies; MEDIACCIONS, which focuses on the social and cultural transformations related to digital technologies and the media; and DARTS, which studies the intersections between art, design, technoscience and society.

Recommended resources

You can also consult the list of articles on gender bias in Wikipedia, the female presence in digital archives and museums and specialist publications on gender studies.