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Atos Origin promotes the participation of women in IT


Atos Origin, an international IT services company, today announced that it has signed a collaboration agreement with the Spanish Coordinator for the European Women’s Lobby (CELEM,) to encourage the participation of women in IT.

The agreement signed with CELEM, which represents 35 women’s organisations in Spain, represents the first time that a technology company and a women’s organisation work together to support and encourage the participation of women in IT.

Through this agreement, Atos Origin will develop a specific methodology for integrating systems plans, known as ISIS: Methodology for Implementation of Information Systems in Women’s Associations. The project is subsidised by Plan Avanza, within the framework of the 2006 announcement of the Ministry of Industry, and will be completed in the first half of 2007.

This project stems from the need to incorporate new technologies and modernise the information and communication systems of social movements, especially Women’s Associations, which are lagging behind other collectives in areas of technology. The difficulty in accessing new information technologies and adequate implementation of these are still basic challenges for these organisations. Although many have already taken the first step by incorporating Internet access and email, and have a website, they still have not made systematic advances. Many still find it difficult to make a strategic commitment to incorporate new technologies, which are normally dependent on hardware donations and occasional installations of software, and other technological products and systems.

The women’s associations are part of the more than 250,000 not-for-profit non-governmental organisations in Spain. These organisations contain about 11 million members, one million volunteers who dedicate more than four hours a week to collaborate in activities in the sector, more than 475,000 full-time paid employees, and running costs that make up 4% of Spain’s GDP according to the figures gathered in a study published a few years ago by the BBVA Foundation and which demonstrate the size of the not-for-profit sector in Spain.

The agreement between Atos Origin and CELEM deems it fundamental to promote access by women’s associations to the Information Society. The benefit of having strategic planning tools on its information systems will enable women to have modern, competitive, flexible, organisations capable of meeting their needs, while at the same time integrating them into the framework of the Knowledge and Information Society. It will also enable said entities to consolidate their capabilities as forums of civil participation and political influence.

The methodology to be developed by Atos Origin will take into account innovative key factors in the scope of Information Systems, such as:

the size of the organisation, taking into account that many associations are small to medium-sized
the gender factor
the fact that they are not-for-profit organisations
the inclusion of e-participation
The methodology will be validated in five women’s organisations: the Federación de Mujeres Progresistas (Progressive Women’s Federation), the Comisión para la Investigación de Malos Tratos a Mujeres (Commission for Investigation of Abuse to Women), the Asociación de Mujeres Juristas Themis (Themis Women Lawyers Association), Forum Feminista (Feminist Forum), and the Spanish Coordinator for the European Women’s Lobby itself.


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