Date: January 17, 2000
Dr. Janese Swanson — Girl Tech

Technology is becoming increasingly integral to our lives. It is vital for young girls become familiar with technology and to have positive role models if they are to reach their full potential in today’s society. Dr Swanson will discuss her research findings and strategies for encouraging girls in technology use.

Dr. Swanson’s research on children’s play patterns and use of technology has revealed:

  • Girls are starting to shy away from technology, a factor that will be detrimental to their future career opportunities.

  • Girls enjoy and will play with technology toys/software if they are developed with girls’ interests in mind.

  • It is important to reach girls and help them become comfortable with technology before they hit the confusing teenage years.

    As a senior product manager at Broderbund Software, Dr. Swanson produced the popular Carmen Sandiego ™ Macintosh series. Through her company Kid One For Fun, she developed and licensed electronic toys, including the Yak Bak™ series and TalkBoy FX™. Dr. Swanson founded Girl Tech in 1995 after finding that so many wonderful technology products were developed for and marketed solely to boys. Since then she has produced the first of a series of books, Tech Girl’s Internet Adventures; which won Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Products for 1997 and the Parent Council Award; developed the popular Web site and prototyped GirlZine: A Magazine for the Global Girl ®.

    Related Links:

    NPR’s Talk of the Nation show on “Grrl Culture” (Real Audio, 12/8/99)