Logic, ladies. And society owe us.

Women are not capable of thinking logically. There was something wrong with our uterus, or is it hormones, or even another brain? Whatever the justifications for this claim are, we have successfully let ourselves be talked into it and at some point between the ages of 6 and 14 we lose our self-confidence in math and technology.

Instead, other attributions work. Women are much more empathic, they have other abilities. As a result, our interest usually focuses on relationship work, dealing with people, social issues.

We tend to choose professions in these fields - in contrast to men. They become technicians, engineers, programmers, while we become nurses, kindergarten teachers or hairdressers because we want to help other people or bring them joy.

A vicious circle of attribution and self-doubt still prevents girls and women from engaging in digitization and technology. Because for this - it seems - we would have to give up our female abilities and become like men. What woman wants to do that?

The good news is that we women can engage with innovation, technology and digitization and at the same time with people. After all, only 20 percent of the development of digital solutions has to do with logical thinking. 80 percent is about understanding problems, communicating about approaches to solutions and interacting with society, says Prof. Kappel from the Vienna University of Technology. Especially when it comes to developing innovative solutions for social, societal problems.

Because we can use digitization and technologies not only to automate industrial production processes even more, but also to bring successful social innovations to the world.
A social innovation is successful if it increases the self-determination and decision-making scope of disadvantaged social groups and improves their chances of achieving a better quality of life.

This means that the first step is to perceive a problem, to identify the cause of a disadvantage or a restriction of self-determination. I don't need math or technology for this. For this I need exactly what many women learn and are able to do from girl's legs: Empathy, the ability to listen, to face human suffering, communication skills.

Only then is it about the solution. And even this is not developed by the clichéd, anti-social computer nerd in ingenious individual work in the techie chamber, but in co-creation processes together with target groups and in variously designed teams.

Digital tools, no matter what they are, are nothing but tools. The same applies to them as to any other tool. You have to know them, you have to know what you can do with them and you have to know if and where you can get hurt or cause damage with them. The better we master a tool, the better we get ideas about what else we can do with it.
But: I don't have to be a blacksmith to work with a hammer. I don't have to be a programmer to use digital tools. I just have to be curious and practice.

And if I want to be able to do more than apply digitalization, if I want to develop a solution to a problem, then I have to be able to work in a team, to cooperate and co-create. Ladies, that is our strength. Let's take it seriously and bring it into the current transformation of our society. Let's help shape it with our view, our experiences and our needs and thus make it more livable for all people.

Walburga Fröhlich

PS: Of course, women can think logically just as well or badly as men.

 

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