Images of Technology


Project Description

RWTH Aachen participates in a research project which is conducted on the behalf of WIST II expert group. This project is situated at the Inter-University Research Centre for Technology, Work and Culture in Graz/Austria and is led by Professor Dr. Christine Waechter. The Integration Team is responsible for the successful realisation of the programme at RWTH Aachen.

The project deals with the question on how companies and universities communicate images of technology, engineering and engineers in their external presentation. Words, concepts and images influence the understanding and perception of people in general and of course that one of engineers in their profession specifically.

Leading companies and university which are perceived as equal opportunities employers consider and communicate the integration of gender and diversity as part of their corporate identity and organisational culture. They are able to access a huge and innovative talent pool e.g. through the smart use of powerful words and images. These institutions externally communicate the inclusion of all employees.

Especially in the areas of natural sciences and engineering where women are still under represented, it is important to make them more visible: as experts in the same way as consumers through the use of non-discriminatory language and images.

Marketing and public relations materials of companies and universities which directly address female scientists and engineers will be analysed and evaluated. The results of this analysis are supposed to give information about the propagation of images of natural sciences, engineering and technology which are communicated through the scientific and corporate mainstream. Additionally activities which directly address women will be assessed in terms of their subtexts. Finally on the basis of the results analysis, recommendations for internal and external communications strategies regarding the incorporation of gender and diversity aspects can be developed.