Monash deepens transport collaboration with Indonesia

Monash deepens transport collaboration with Indonesia

Transport Dialogue with the Ministry of Transportation

The Monash Indonesia Representative Office (MIRO) coordinated an engaging Transport Dialogue between Monash University and the Ministry of Transportation, Republic of Indonesia. The dialogue looked at transport through a leadership, capacity and innovation lens and panels were structured to capture multiple perspectives and link these themes. Held during the annual visit of Monash President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Margaret Gardner AO, the event attracted a full house to the Mandarin Oriental Hotel venue. We were honoured to have the Minister for Transportation, Mr Budi Karya Sumadi, join Professor Gardner for the opening session on Sector Strategy and Leadership. This conversation between the two leaders outlined the contribution, challenges and collaborative solutions of their respective organisations within the transport sector.  A key outcome was the agreement that solutions lie within multidisciplinary collaborative approaches.

Expertly facilitated by the Australia Indonesia Centre’s digital economy fellow, Ms Helen Brown, the conversational-style panels promoted an open and informative discussion.  “I thought the overall tone throughout the discussion was positive and purposeful, as it generally stayed close to the vision of sharing ideas and aspirations; coupled with the ground-work of how to make it happen,” Helen said.

Senior Indonesian government officials enthusiastically contributed to the planning and participated in panels, the networking sessions and subsequent visits to Monash to progress the partnership. The panel on Transit Oriented Development (ToD) involved discussion between Mr Bambang Prihartono, Head of Greater Jakarta Transport Authority (BPTJ) at the Ministry, Professor Graham Currie, founder and Director of the Public Transport Research Group at Monash, and Dr Agung Wicaksono MSc., MBA, Director of Operations and Maintenance at PT MRT Jakarta. It was focused on the community experience, implementing low-cost high-value strategies to influence transport usage and behaviour, along with technical and capacity constraints.

In the panel on Disruptive Innovation in Transportation, Professor Currie sat alongside Mr Muhammad Awaluddin, President Director of PT Angkasa Pura II (AP II) and Monash distinguished alumnus, Professor Wihana Kirana Jaya, Senior Adviser to the Minister on Economic and Transportation Investment at the Ministry. They discussed artifical intelligence solutions,  digital innovation and how to value add to the consumer experience.

Building on connections

Engagement with the Ministry of Transportation has been growing over the past few years, primarily through research projects in rail, ports and capacity building. In November 2017, our sponsorship and participation in the Indonesian Economic Forum was a catalyst to deepening collaboration with the Ministry. A follow up visit from Professor Wihana to Monash Clayton and Caulfield campuses in December 2017 foregrounded the Transport Dialogue event in Jakarta. 'Monash University has grown substantially since I studied my doctoral degree there. It is exciting to learn more about the capacity for research and professional development Monash has, and the opportunity for Indonesia through this collaboration,' he said.

Local media coverage of the event was extensive and highlighted the Minister’s comments that the Ministry of Transportation is pleased to work with Monash University as Australia’s largest university to improve transport function and service in Indonesia. The Ministry invites Monash to co-develop innovative solutions to transport challenges and share knowledge for mutual benefit. The reports focused on the partnership and the opportunities for collaboration between Monash and the Ministry to lead to positive outcomes for Indonesia’s transport network. The media also commented on the need for public facing infrastructure projects to accelerate.

Formalising the partnership

We utilised the occasion to formalise our partnership by signing an MOU. The MOU sets the foundation for collaboration on education, research and consultancy to address contemporary transportation challenges in Indonesia. One week later the Secretary General of Ministry of Transportation visited our Caulfield campus to drive the next steps including the establishment of a Steering Group, which will include expertise from across Monash, particularly Engineering, IT and Arts faculties.

Land, sea, and air

Bolstering current Monash collaboration projects with Indonesia in rail and ports, we hosted a meeting with Angkasa Pura 2 (AP II) to discuss opportunities for collaboration around air transportation. Professor Awaluddin, who joined our second panel at the Transport Dialogue, had the opportunity to visit our Clayton campus and discuss potential projects relating to smart airports, big data, research opportunities and professional development for staff. Monash has been invited to join an international advisory group of AP11 and we have nominated a representative from IT.

Contact: Monash Indonesia Representative Office