Jakarta – BRIN Public Relations. Head of the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN), Laksana Tri Handoko, said that in general the research ecosystem in Indonesia is not yet ideal. This can be seen from the fact that many researchers are experiencing difficulties due to various limitations. The integration of research institutions into BRIN is expected to improve the research ecosystem in Indonesia.

“The limitations felt by the researchers include the expertise of the researchers, inadequate infrastructure such as equipment and laboratories, and budgeting,” said Handoko, Jakarta, Tuesday (18/01/2022).

All these limitations, continued Handoko, can be minimized by integrating all research entities in Indonesia. The integration mandated by Presidential Regulation Number 78 of 2021 includes all research resources, namely human resources, infrastructure, and funding.

This integration, said Handoko, is expected to be a solution to the fundamental problems that have been faced by Indonesia in the field of research. “The fundamental problem of research in Indonesia so far is low critical mass, so with this integration we have sufficient human resources, complete infrastructure and large funding,” he said.

In addition, integration is one of efforts made in order to improve the research ecosystem in Indonesia so that it becomes ideal. Improving the research ecosystem is not just about increasing the number of excellent research but how to involve as many inventive people as possible in research.

‚ÄúResearchers are not exclusively scientists, but everyone can actually be a researcher, that way we can get a lot of innovations produced. However, we cannot focus on products because if we only focus on products, it will be a short-term strategy,” he added.

With regard to research funding in Indonesia, Handoko admitted that the research fund is actually quite large, but they are scattered in many institutions/ministries so that the distribution is small and cannot produce maximum products. However, the most important thing apart from funding for research is the quality of human resources and infrastructure.

“With good research human resources and infrastructure, we can attract funding from partners both at home and abroad through various collaboration schemes,” he said.

Vaccine research the focus of BRIN

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic demands that BRIN and other institutions immediately carry out research on provision of covid vaccine. The merah putih vaccine is one type of vaccines that is expected to be the vaccine produced by the nation’s citizens.

He hoped that the development of the merah putih vaccine will soon be completed and can be utilized by the community. Although he admitted that making a vaccine is not an easy job, considering that thus far Indonesia has not had many researchers who have experience in the field of vaccines.

“The target of having a merah putih vaccine is number one, but there is something much more important, namely how to create the capacity of researchers who are able to develop vaccines independently,” he said.

According to Handoko, the ability to develop vaccines independently will be an important asset, considering that so far the vaccines circulating in Indonesia are licensed from foreign products. This is the focus and learning for BRIN to increase the capacity of researchers in vaccine development. (pur)