AIC wins funding to run workshop for policymakers through the Australia Awards Fellowship

funding for new railway workshop

The Australia-Indonesia Centre has won funding to train officials in how to implement research findings into policymaking.

The program builds on the AIC’s research work into South Sulawesi’s first railway line and will bring in 15 mid to senior level policymakers and academics from Indonesia with an interest in transport infrastructure.

Funding is from the Australia Awards Fellowships program through the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Senior researchers from the AIC’s partner universities will guide the participants through the policy recommendations from their work. The participants will examine how the findings can be used to deliver effective transport and supply chain systems at all levels of government.

The AIC research under the Partnership for Australia Indonesia Research (PAIR) program undertakes research to provide evidence for use in better policymaking. For the transport research teams this has included issues such as the intermodal connectivity with new railway stations and examining how to ensure public use of the new line by connecting stations to other transport services and facilities.

According to executive director Eugene Sebastian the award funding will enhance the capability of officials who play a role in South Sulawesi’s social and economic improvement.

“As a continuation of the research partnership between Australia and Indonesia, the program will require them to develop a policy proposal based on their learning and present it to high level officials to demonstrate their new knowledge,” said Dr Sebastian.

The participants will have a pre-departure briefing in Makassar, the capital city of South Sulawesi, followed by two weeks of face-to-face training in Melbourne and ending with post-program activity back in Indonesia.

The pre-program activities will also include an intermodal transportation integration training to increase competency in understanding Indonesian laws and regulations, while the post-program will require the participants to showcase the policy proposals they have developed using the skills and knowledge gained during the program.

Participants will be appointed AIC policy fellows at the end of the program and continue working with the AIC on South Sulawesi’s development. The program is also part of the AIC’s work in building a network of researchers, government officials, business leaders and community leaders.

“The appointment as fellows is an example of how the AIC can continue to deepen relationships and create collaboration opportunities,” said Dr Sebastian.

The new railway line is the starting point of the Trans-Sulawesi railway network which is projected to eventually connect all the provinces on the island of Sulawesi. The Makassar-Parepare line itself connects the two major port cities of Makassar and Parepare and the three local districts between them – Maros, Pangkajene dan Kepulauan, and Barru Regency.

The PAIR program is also a key contributor in a groundbreaking partnership between AIC and the Indonesian Transportation Policy Agency, supported by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), the Indonesian Ministry of Transportation and the South Sulawesi provincial government.

All of the fellows taking part in this training are from government institutions, universities and NGOs:

  • The Ministry of Transportation at the national level
  • The South Sulawesi Provincial Development Planning and Research Agency
  • The Regional Development Planning Agency, City of Makassar
  • The Department of Transportation from Parepare City
  • The Department of Transportation Maros Regency
  • Universitas Hasanuddin (South Sulawesi)
  • Universitas Gadjah Mada (Yogyakarta)
  • Indonesian Disability Movement for Equality (PerDIK), and IDE Inklusi as disability focused NGOs

Read more: PAIR research supports Indonesian transportation ministry on South Sulawesi railway

Digital Communication Associate, AIC

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Lead, Communications and Engagement AIC