Becky Faith

Becky Faith

Research Student (Full-time)

How does the use of mobile devices by socially excluded young women impact on their capabilities?

For young people aged between 16-24, the smartphone is the dominant communications technology: yet research on young women and mobile device use in Europe and the US has largely focussed on well-educated, affluent women. We know little about how young women who are unemployed and on low-incomes use their smartphones: whether they are replacing desktop computers and whether they are able to use these devices to access information and opportunities which might impact positively on their lives. This research is concerned with the use of mobile devices by socially excluded young women and is framed by the inequalities that they might be seen to be experiencing.

My research is driven by three issues:

  1. Gaps in both the literature and data on the use of technology – and in particular mobile devices – by socially excluded young women.
  2. The increasing importance of digital skills and capabilities for full and equal participation in society which is understood for the purpose of this research through the framework of the ‘digital divide’.
  3. Noted gender inequality that is potentially experienced by these young women – which is at odds with a broader trajectory towards gender equality in UK society.

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