Minister of Finance, State Minister of National Development Planning Support the Autonomous Funding Mechanism for Science in Indonesia
Resource: AIPI Press Release
Jakarta-25 May 2015 - Minister of Finance of Republic of Indonesia Bambang P.S Brodjonegoro and The State Minister of National Development Planning Andrinof Chaniago support the establishment of the Indonesian Science Fund (ISF), an independent body under the Indonesian Academy of Sciences (AIPI) that will directly fund scientists to conduct the world-class research to increase Indonesia’s global competitiveness, launched by AIPI. The Minister of Finance said that the government supports the funding mechanism through the Indonesian Endowment Fund for Education (Lembaga Pengelolaan Dana Pendidikan, LPDP).
“The government’s support for research is crucial and is one of LPDP’s mission,” he said during the discussion on ISF launch in Jakarta on Wednesday, 27 May 2015. “I think it’s not good if twenty years later, we still say that Indonesia is an emerging market. I don’t think it’s quite prestigious to say that. We have to say that 20 years from now, we are a developed economy. And I think science need to be developed well and supported by enough funding from the budget,” he added.
He is confident the funding scheme in ISF will allow scientist to conduct their research and improve their respective fields. ISF’s scheme is similar to the National Science Foundation in United States, whereas the researchers are allowed to propose basic science research which corresponds to their interests. The Minister shared his experience when he was a doctorate candidate in University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign who were able to utilize the NSF grant through his advisor. “I had the liberty to conduct research that I want because of the flexibility of the grant, at that time I developed economy impact model for Jakarta,” he said. “If we have this kind of system in Indonesia, which is the ISF, hopefully it is not just the science that we develop but also the master and Phd program in Indonesia,” the Minister added.
During the discussion, the State Minister of National Development Planning Andrinof Chaniago also stated his support to ISF. Sustainable funding and a flexible mechanism are essential to bolster the national productivity for science and technology. “We cannot apply the rigid procurement mechanism to support cutting-edge science and innovative technology. Providing trust fund and endowment fund can be the answer to this matter,” he said. He is optimistic that such effort will result in the strong economic development, based on research and industry.
Many countries acknowledged that the establishment of national fund that awards grants on a competitive, merit-based process is the most effective way to encourage the best world-class science and engineering. “Through this way, researchers and scientists will be motivated to submit their best ideas in their research proposal, in addition to implementation of more prescriptive, results-oriented projects,” said the Vice-President of Indonesian Academy of Science, Professor Satryo Soemantri Brodjonegoro.
Supported by the government of Indonesia, Australia, and the United States, the ISF will provide competitive rewards and incentives for quality research. The ISF will also create funding instruments for the specific innovations needed to address Indonesia’s development issues.The need for the ISF was proposed in the report “Creating an Indonesian Science Fund,” a collaboration between AIPI, the World Bank, and Australian Aid in 2012.
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