Jakarta – Minister for Research, Technology, and Higher Education, M. Nasir received a visit of Minister for Education, Aboriginal Affairs and Electoral Affairs, Western Australia, Peter Collier MLC in Jakarta (04/05).

Minister Collier came with the total of 14 delegation which consist of Chancellors and Vice Chancellors of the big five Universities in Western Australia (The University of Notre Dame Australia, The University of Western Australia, Murdoch University, Curtin University and Edith Cowan University) and Minister’s Advisers. The Australian Ambassador for Indonesia, Paul Grigson and Counsellor for Education and Science, Astrida Upitis also accompanied the delegation.

Minister Nasir appreciated the collaboration that has been conducted very well. He further mentioned that it should be enhanced more, particularly in the area of joint research. He also stated the concern of the Indonesian Government about the tuition fees. It is considered as an expensive one and the amount is frequently changed every year.

“It is quite difficult for Indonesian Government to allocate the funding as we follow the fixed-cost budget until the student accomplish the study,” he said.

In response to that, the Chancellors will coordinate among the Universities and inform the decision to Kemristekdikti.
Director General for Resource Management, Ali Ghufron, proposed some ideas of collaboration which include: (i) co-sharing funding for doctoral program, 3+1 (3 years covered by Indonesian Government, 1 year by Australian Universities); (ii) training for registered nurses; (iii) inviting professors to teach and provide academic proficiency in universities in Indonesia.

In line with those proposals, Director for Research and Community Service, Ocky Karna Radjasa described four clusters of universities based on the research capacity: (i) Mandiri, (ii) Utama, (iii) Madya and (iv) Binaan.

“This clustering could be considered as a reference for Universities in Australia when they would like to have collaboration with universities in Indonesia,” he mentioned.

He further explained about the collaboration of the two Countries under the framework of Australia Indonesia Center (AIC). Ocky hopes that there will be research collaboration under the bilateral framework that will increase number of international publication from Indonesian scientists.

“The Government will fully support international cooperation, and in 2017, the Ministry will initiate an International Integrated Collaboration Program that is set up for one of supportive programs for scientists and academia to have an international joint research,” he said.

Ambassador Grigson acknowledged the proposals and will synergize it with the Program of Knowledge Sector Initiative that has been in place.

Before ending the Meeting, Minister Nasir informed the audience on the upcoming 2nd Joint Working Group on Science, Technology and Higher Education, will be held in Australia in the second semester of this year. He further mentioned that it should be placed as a platform of all bilateral programs.

Minister Nasir was accompanied by Special Minister’s Appointee, Abdul Wahid Maktub; Minister’s Adviser for Academic, Paulina Pannen; and Head of Bureau for Cooperation and Public Communication, Nada Marsudi. (ts/bkkp)