Supervisors: Robin Mansell
Research topic: Social networks in the network society: new dynamics of networking among women's organizations in Asia
My thesis focuses on the electronic network and its transformation in relation to women's organizations and their social context. Despite the fact that a visible expansion of electronic networking among women's organizations has been occurring for the last decade, there appears to be insufficient evidence to indicate how in reality ICT helps the advancement of women. My research thus investigates this query by mapping out the transformation in a women's electronic network - whether, how and to what extent the use of the computer-mediated communications (CMC) has transformed the goals, activities and members of the electronic network of women's organizations. The research question is pursued by examining a case study of an electronic network of women's organizations called the Asian Women's Resource Exchange. The results of the study indicate that the transformation of a women's electronic network is not a straightforward process and does not necessarily generate the expected results. Rather, the transformations that occur are the result of complex interactions between technology and the social context whereby women change their practices and norms by working collectively through the electronic network which, in turn, leads to often unexpected changes in their activities and their membership. I obtained a master's degree from Department of Communication in Cornell University in 1990, focusing on communication in developing countries. Since 1992, I have been working for a various offices of the United Nations in the field of economic and social development. My doctoral thesis is based on a project which I undertook when I worked for the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia ant the Pacific in Bangkok, Thailand. I am currently working for the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification as head of Communication, Awareness Raising and Education Unit.