For over 2 decades, I have been motivated by understanding how women and other marginalized people can benefit from technology -- and how they don't. As a technologist, social scientist, and feminist, my goal has been to come at digital development from as many dimensions as possible -- industry, academic, government and non-profit -- to determine where the most sustainable and equitable impact can be had.
I direct the WomenConnect Challenge these days, a USAID-led effort to address the social norms that keep women offline and systemically underempowered in their communities. This is a bold step from the usual funding of more obvious barriers or one-off programs.
Former Chief of Party for the Global Broadband and Innovation Alliance (GBI), a collaboration between USAID and NetHope to leverage ICT to support socioeconomic development across USAID priority countries. I also directly managed the Women and the Web Alliance with Intel and others.
I launched the first dedicated master's program in ICTD in the United States at the University of Colorado's ATLAS Institute. Five incredible cohorts of students, coming from over 20 academic disciplines, came to Boulder to become "academic practitioners" -- hybrid technical experts and social scientists. I taught courses on ICTD Case Studies, Global Development, social entrepreneurship, research and fieldwork methods, telecom policy, and other electives.
A decade at Microsoft and Microsoft Research (MSR), followed by a Microsoft Graduate Research Fellowship at MSR Labs, India, gave me a strong technical background as well launching my career in gender and tech. At the apex of this work, I was invited to testify on gender and technology pipeline issues before Congress. My gender and technology work that began at Microsoft and continues is featured in this video from the 2012 Anita Borg Institute Women of Vision award for Social Impact.
Some past projects around the world, in conjunction with students from the University of Colorado: