Gender and Technology Training Guidelines
technical' may be a value judgement. When reviewing the definitions of
'technology' provided by the participants, the facilitator should select words
and phrases which will lead into a broader discussion of the issues and which
will enable participants to begin to re-assess their understanding of what is
technical and what is not. Discussion should begin also to question the value
accorded to certain skills (for example, is blacksmithing more ‘difficult’ or
‘valuable’ than dressmaking?)
A further issue, which this session may highlight, is that of organisation.
Production processes require organisation. Different tasks have to be carried
out in a particular order (planting before weeding, grinding before oil
extraction) and the labour and other conditions necessary to carrying out the
tasks have to be organised. Where people have a lot of different things to do
in one day (like most women) organising activities around a production process
may require considerable skill. Organisation is a part of production and may
be regarded as a part of technology.
The facilitator should thus guide the participants into developing a definition
of technology which includes 'skills and knowledge' to carry out tasks. If the
participants themselves do not identify 'organisation', the facilitator can raise
this during the summing up.