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How does Indonesian Government determine its Technology Policy?

The Indonesian Government has recently been preparing its policies and regulations for the onset of digital transformation that has been rippling through the region.

OpenGov spoke to Dr. Ashwin Sasongko, Researcher of Information Communications Technology Center, Indonesian Institute of Sciences, about how the Indonesian Government forms its policy and direction, with respect to greater ICT integration.

Dr. Ir. Ashwin Sasongko, MSc. is the former Director-General for Informatics Applications and Secretary General for The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (KOMINFO) . Here, he was believed to have committed to the growth of information technology and local IT-based creative industries in Indonesia.  

He assisted in the drafting and implementing policies in the field of e-government, e-business, software and content, empowerment and standardized IT and audit telematics applications.

Now, he is conducting research at the Indonesian Institute of Sciences to support his advisement role to the Government.

“We do research on ICT governance within Indonesia. From my findings, I will support and advise others on how to make ICT governance decisions,” Mr. Sasongko said.

As he is a former head of KOMINFO, Mr. Sasongko is a trustworthy and experience source of expertise on Indonesian Government IT practices and policies. He now serves an integral role in advising Government agencies through the ICT council.

“For this year, my key objective will be to interpret the role of ICT in government. The ICT council advises government on how to move forward in their ICT governance and development,” Mr. Sasongko told us, “For example, the Ministry of Finance is investing a lot of rupiah towards data centres. My advice to them was to look to those data centres which are not fully utilised. Buy the system software and put it there, put a higher level of security to protect the IT infrastructure.”

Through this advisor role, he has emphasised that it is vital for agencies to recognise the bigger picture when implementing ICT programmes.

“The challenges I face while making these recommendations include once a program is funded, it must have the right support and resources behind it,” stated Mr. Sasongko, “That is why the ICT council will report to the President so that he can influence Ministers in their IT strategy.”

Mr. Sasongko had a few recommendations as to how the Indonesian Government to reshape itself in order to spur innovation and digital transformation. He told us that in embracing the age of digital transformation, each agency has their own part to play in servicing the public.

“If you look at the Indonesia political system, you see that KOMINFO overlooks after all of the ICT private sector. Yet, the agencies should all be responsible for their own business processes and services,” Mr. Sasongko emphasised, “For example, the Ministry of Trade will set up the e-trading portal and the Agency for National Archives should establish the online public archives.”

As Mr. Sasongko carries on his IT governance advisor role, he will be forward thinking and continue to use his research, past experience, and knowledge when predicting which path is the best way forward for Indonesia’s Government. 

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