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Tech Ministry and National Agency to Lead Indonesia’s Research Agenda

Indonesia Research Agenda

Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo officially opened the 2020 National Coordinating Meeting of the Ministry of Research and Technology / National Agency for Research and Innovation.

According to a recent press release, President Jokowi stated that the Ministry, being the research and innovation activities consolidator, should focus on developing strategic research priorities; increase the welfare of the people; and address the issues of the nation while utilising the global opportunities for the country’s future.

He stressed that the Ministry should be the agency for the innovation intelligence of the nation.

Directives for 2020

There are three directives for the Ministry.

First, it should consolidate the national strategic research agenda in various fields. The researchers should bring out added values for the country and for the economy.

Second, the Ministry is expected to conduct budget consolidation. The President explained that the research budget in Indonesia is distributed to various research institutions, which, if combined, reaches the value of IDR 27 trillion (US$ 1985.66).

If consolidated, the research fund will generate inventions.

Third, the Ministry of Research and Technology should confirm the actors and network, which will be involved in the national strategic innovations.

Apart from uniting 329 research units owned by the ministries and institutions, all parties should work together.

Strategic Issues

At the same event, the Minister of Research and Technology / Chairman of the National Agency for Research and Innovation Bambang Brodjonegoro explained their strategic issues.

First is the utilisation of research and technology as the driver of sustainable economic growth. The government had determined the economic growth target of 5.4% – 6% per year.

The Ministry will ensure that the research products in every development will contribute to economic growth.

The second is the increasing effectivity of the utilisation of research, technology, and innovation funds.

Currently, government funding is still within the range of 0.25% of the GDP. However, the government budget is distributed in various R&D units, ministries, and institutions so it would account for the duplication and inefficiencies.

Third is the low adoption capacity of research, technology, and innovation in Indonesia. The country currently ranks 85th out of 129 countries, having a Global Innovation Index score of 29.27 from a scale of 0-100 in 2019.

The Minister explained that the cause of this was the low R&D spending on GDP, the low number of patents, and low science and engineering publication numbers on the global scale.

Add to that the limited R&D infrastructure and the limited number of human resources in research and technology.

The fourth issue speaks of the lack of an innovation ecosystem. This slows down the commercialisation process of R&D products.

The Ministry of Research and Technology/National Agency for Research and Innovation will be supporting the implementation of a national research program.

There is a need to ensure that research and innovation will contribute to the economic growth acceleration agenda; will solve national problems; will sustain development agenda as well as the national research and technology autonomy agenda.

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