Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln



Scout Calvert

Document Type


Date of this Version



International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology 2:2 (2010), pp. 281–286.


Book review

Copyright © 2010 Scout Calvert.

Published with a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) license.


Care work and technological work are markedly striated by sex; the sites where they overlap are few. What happens when the labor of care meets up with information technologies? It makes good methodological sense to look at largely feminized environments that are also increasingly technological. Gender, Health, and Information Technology in Context, edited and with contributions by Ellen Balka, Eileen Green, and Flis Henwood, is a welcome contribution to the body of evidence about the socio-technical co-construction of technology, health, and gender. The volume houses nine studies, bookended by an astute introduction and conclusion by the editors. Each study brings empirical research to bear on technology and gender in health contexts. The studies originate from the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia, and from multiple sites of practice, including clinics, hospitals, community centers, libraries, and health outreach.

Each of the nine chapters is based on theoretically grounded qualitative research. The represented theoretical approaches make connections between computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW), science and technology studies (STS), feminist epistemology, feminist science studies, labor studies, library and information science, and care work. Thus this volume is of interest to multiple audiences. It is equally appropriate to nursing, health sciences, information studies, and labor studies. It is also a helpful resource for those looking at the labor of care, both in nursing and in other care-based or feminized professions, and particularly those facing transformation of work routines through new information technologies. Informants include patients, nurses, health intermediaries, social workers, and other hospital workers. This collection will be valuable to anyone looking for empirical examples and studies of the intersection of women’s labor and technology, labor of care and technology, or gender and technology more broadly construed.