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Invisible Women




Upon researching more under the broad topic of women's right and place in society these days, I stumbled on a very interesting topic from a podcast I listen to called Invisible women by 99% invisible. In the episode the host Roman Mars interviews Caroline Criado Perez who wrote booked called Invisible Women: Data bia's in a world designed for men where she opens up the discussion with giving an example of snow plowing patterns in a small town in Sweden. The town’s approach was to clear major roads first, then smaller local streets, researchers discovered that men and female driving patterns were different. Men mostly drove from in and out of work most of the time, while women had more complex patterns in running errands and family related things. So when the city council got a hold of these results, they hand the dynamics of how the streets where plowed, in doing so it resulted with less ER cases at the hospital. Perez highlights of course this wasn't done on purpose it was just the lack of research and data collection on women that resulted in this despite having well intentions.


"At the root of all these design problems which don't take women into account, is the fallacy of the default male. The idea when we picture a default human when we design something we picture a man"

This really struck a cord with me how can true it is to me when I think about it as well, and how very strange it is. As well as how it can to be as such? is the cultural background I grew up in? What will happen if we take this into consideration? How beneficial can it be for everyone not just women? Educating others on this topic and bringing awareness to it seems to be the solution, I agree with Perez by conducting alot of research on women and collecting data is the first step to achieve that and the second I would add is to actually ask women and design to their design not presume this will just do because it already works for one type of person. "Of course, when these designs aren’t adopted, the women are sometimes blamed for their failure to adapt to the design."