Examining Women’s Access to Digital Platforms: A case of Mobile Broadband Connections in Uganda

Examining Women’s Access to Digital Platforms: A case of Mobile Broadband Connections in Uganda

Funder: Association for Progressive Communication (APC)

Project summary

With over 22.3 million Ugandan telephone subscribers on both fixed and mobile connection and a 61% telephone penetration rate, access to the internet via mobile broadband connection is one of the most important ways with which majority Ugandans access the internet (CIPESA 2016). Affordability remains one of the most important obstacles to internet access in Uganda where 1 GB of mobile broadband data costs nearly 16% of a person’s average monthly income (A4AI, 2017). The 2018 National broadband policy notes that the cost to connect to the east coast of Africa from Uganda is higher than the cost to get to Europe or USA from the Africa coast further offering a blurred picture to universal and affordable access (MoICT&NG, 2018).

With support from APC, Women of Uganda Network (WOUGNET) seeks to conduct an evidence-based research to understand gendered aspects of mobile broadband data services on women’s access and use of data plans including their ability to purchase data plans, the type of access they have and how the universal access programs – the rural communication development plan (RCDF), the mobile broadband internet packages offered by telecoms have positively or negatively influenced a gendered use and access to mobile broadband internet connection in Uganda by women.

The specific objectives are;

  • Gender dimension of women’s mobile broadband internet access in Uganda are examined.
  • The different types of data plans and quantify levels of access across gender are analyzed.
  • Policy advocacy initiatives to lower broadband cost targeting policy makers, stakeholders, women rights activists, youth (boys and girls), telecos are developed
  • Findings to the policy makers, women and girls, telecom companies and civil society groups are documented and disseminated.
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