The Future of Gender and Gender Equality Online

A Scenario Analysis of Imaginaries on Gender and Social Media Platforms


  • Babette Lagrange Ghent University
  • Sofie Van Bauwel Ghent University
  • Daniel Biltereyst Ghent University
  • Sara Cannizzaro IULM Università di comunicazione e lingue
  • Justine Toms Department of Media and Communication – New Bulgarian University
  • Yasemin Ağca Fine Arts Department – Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, Bilkent University
  • Ingrid Andersson International Organisation for Knowledge Economy and Enterprise Development – IKED
  • Emma Bjorner Department of Business Administration – School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg; International Organisation for Knowledge Economy and Enterprise Development – IKED
  • Achilleas Karadimitriou Department of Communications and Media Studies – National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Klára Odstrčilová Charles University
  • Stylianos Papathanassopoulos Department of Communications and Media Studies – National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Elisabetta Risi IULM University
  • Valentina Latronico USI – Università della Svizzera Italiana



Future scenario, gender, gender equality, social media platform, feminism


The emergence and growth of the internet and social media platforms have engendered significant transformations in everyday life, affecting not only society’s most innermost life but also its structural organization. This digital realm impacts gender equality, giving rise to spaces for feminist community building and activism, but at the same time enabling online gender harassment and violence. Our aim was to construct possible scenarios of the future, focusing on foreseeable consequences of social media on gender (in)equality in Europe. Using the Delphi+ method, we generated diverse future scenarios envisioning the intersection of gender and social media platforms. Through an analysis of these scenarios, we identified three recurring themes situated on a continuum from utopian to dystopian perspectives, including various positions in relation to the question of social media as safe or unsafe spaces. This study then provides us with possible imaginaries in relation to gender and social media platforms.

Author Biographies

Babette Lagrange, Ghent University

Babette Lagrange is a researcher at the Department of Communication Science at Ghent University, where she works for the Horizon 2020 funded EUMEPLAT project. She writes and publishes articles on topics related to gender issues. Within these articles she often implements an affect theoretical lens.

Sofie Van Bauwel, Ghent University

Sofie Van Bauwel is a Full Professor at the Department of Communication studies at the Ghent University where she teaches on cultural media studies, gender and media and television studies. She is part of the research centre CIMS and her main field of interest is gender, media and film and television. She is involved in several projects with a focus on the media as signifying articulations in visual popular culture. She was vice-chair of the Gender and Communication section of the European Research and Communication Association (ECREA  2006-2012) and is part of the editorial board of Feminist Media Studies. She is also co-editor of the working papers Film and Television studies and publishes internationally and nationally on popular media culture, feminist theory and film.

Daniel Biltereyst, Ghent University

Daniel Biltereyst is full professor at Ghent University, where he leads the Center for Cinema and Media Studies (CIMS). Besides exploring new approaches to historical media and cinema cultures, he is engaged in work on film and screen culture as sites of censorship, controversy, public debate and audience engagement.

Sara Cannizzaro, IULM Università di comunicazione e lingue

Cannizzaro is a Research Fellow on EUMEPLAT -European media platforms: assessing positive and negative externalities for European culture– at Libera Università di Lingue e Comunicazione IULM (Italy). She is also Senior Research Fellow for TechEthos -Ethics of new and emerging technologies with high socio-economic impact- at de Montfort University (UK).

Justine Toms, Department of Media and Communication – New Bulgarian University

Justine Toms is a lecturer at the New Bulgarian University since 2007, University of Sofia since 2020 and Software University SoftUni since 2017. Toms is well known in the Bulgarian internet community. She has published more then 20 books on internet, online communication and digital media.

Yasemin Ağca, Fine Arts Department – Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, Bilkent University

Ağca is full time Instructor with a background in humanities and media and visual studies. She has taught on aesthetics, art, design history, and advertising. She worked in international research projects and published work in scholarly journals. Research interests include philosophy and history of art, analysis methods, and design history.

Ingrid Andersson, International Organisation for Knowledge Economy and Enterprise Development – IKED

Andersson is Senior Expert at IKED and Vice President of the Global Forum. She has an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) from HEC Paris, with a major in Differentiation and Innovation through Services. She focuses on entrepreneurship, innovation, and commercialization based on tailoring to special customer needs and co-creation.

Emma Bjorner, Department of Business Administration – School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg; International Organisation for Knowledge Economy and Enterprise Development – IKED

Dr. Emma Björner is a Researcher at the Department of Business Administration, the School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, and Senior expert at the International Organisation for Knowledge Economy and Enterprise Development (IKED). Her research centres on marketing, branding, place development, tourism, food, entrepreneurship, policy and media.

Achilleas Karadimitriou, Department of Communications and Media Studies – National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

Karadimitriou is a Researcher, Adjunct Lecturer, and is working as journalist/fact-checker for, headed by the National Centre for Social Research. He has participated in various European research programmes. His publications focus on broadcasting policy, news media and social media framing, journalism professionalism/practices in the context of the platformised era. 

Klára Odstrčilová, Charles University

Klára Odstrčilová is a doctoral candidate and a researcher at the Institute of Communication Studies and Journalism at Charles University. She has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism, and master’s degree in Theory of Interactive Media and Documentary Filmmaking. Klara´s doctoral research is focused on Children on social media.

Stylianos Papathanassopoulos, Department of Communications and Media Studies – National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

Dr. Stylianos Papathanassopoulos is Professor of Media Policy and Organization at the Department of Communication and Media Studies at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. He has written extensively on European and Greek media, with reference to the development and impact of new media in various journals and books.

Elisabetta Risi, IULM University

Elisabetta Risi (PhD) is Senior Assistant Professor at IULM University (Milano). Her research is situated within the field of critical algorithm studies and analyses power asymmetries gender related. She teaches sociology and communication sciences and she is author of several papers on the relationship between subjectivity and platform capitalism.

Valentina Latronico, USI – Università della Svizzera Italiana

Valentina Latronico is a full-time researcher. She trained and specialized in psychology, communication, and management, after which she implemented her experience working on international projects. She now publishes reports and articles in both the academic and corporate worlds.


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How to Cite

Lagrange, B., Van Bauwel, S., Biltereyst, D., Cannizzaro, S., Toms, J., Ağca, Y., Andersson, I., Bjorner, E., Karadimitriou, A., Odstrčilová, K., Papathanassopoulos, S., Risi, E., & Latronico, V. (2024). The Future of Gender and Gender Equality Online: A Scenario Analysis of Imaginaries on Gender and Social Media Platforms. Central European Journal of Communication, 17(1(35), 103-124.

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