Universiteit Leiden

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Dossier

Research

The Faculties of Leiden University have developed several themes for research cooperation between Leiden University and its Indonesian partners.

These themes primarily build upon the existing relationships and projects of Leiden University (and affiliated research institutes such as KITLV, IIAS, Naturalis and the LDE partners Delft University and Erasmus University).

These themes comprise

  • Cosmopolis Advanced - Colonial and Global History: Cosmopolis Advanced (from 2018 onwards) is a continuation of the COSMOPOLIS programme (2012-2017), which unites several research and educational programmes into one community. It is managed by the department of Colonial and Global History at the Institute for History of Leiden University. As a scholarly community, it follows in the footsteps of the TANAP (1999-2006) and ENCOMPASS (2006-2012) programmes that were executed from 1999 onward.
  • Homo erectus on Java – This is a full-scale new study of the old Dubois collection curated at Naturalis, as well as new fieldwork at the Trinil site in  Indonesia.
  • The Judicial Sector Support Program is a response to requests from the Indonesian Supreme Court, the Judicial Commission and the Attorney General’s Office to further strengthen the Rule of Law in Indonesia.
  • Capacity Development of Transnational Law, Asset Recovery and International Investment Arbitration at UI - How can we assist Universitas Indonesia's department of International law to improve their educational and applied research programs on Transnational Law, Asset Recovery and International Investment Arbitration, with an eye on Indonesia’s security and rule of law reform agenda and the needs of the public sector and international organisations ?
  • Research cooperation on transnational law with Universitas Indonesia - Indonesia's public and private sector has an acute shortage of well-trained lawyers with up-to-date knowledge about transnational law who can respond to the country's development needs. In the next four years, this project will help the Faculty of Law of Universitas Indonesia  build the organizational and academic capacity to develop, implement and maintain educational programs on transnational law, asset recovery and international investment arbitration.
  • A psychological investigation and intervention of “the survival mode” among micro entreprises in Indonesia - this research project is aimed at investigating the underlying psychological factors of the survival mode phenomenon among micro entreprises in Indonesia.
  • Perceived nepotism and organizational effectiveness: Causes, impact, and intervention - The intention of the present research is to contribute to the scientific understanding concerning the impact of perceived nepotism on organizational effectiveness.
  • Perceptions of Integrity and Integrity Systems in Indonesia/Yogyakarta (Preliminary title) - In this joint project of the Institute of Public Administration (FGGA – Toon Kerkhoff) and PUKAT (inter-faculty anti-corruption study Center of UGM – Laras Susanti & Océ Madril) will explore  the concept of integrity and the functioning of integrity systems in Indonesia/Yogyakarta.
  • Reconstructing the past through languages of the present: The Lesser Sunda Islands - What can languages spoken in the Lesser Sunda Islands today tell us about the histories of its various population groups?
  • Oral Traditions Studies in Indonesia. Joint doctoral project between LIAS and Konsortium Tradisi Lisan. The consortium consists of Universitas Indonesia, Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia, Universitas Sumatera Utara, Universitas Udayana and Universitas Gajah Mada and is coordinated by the Assosiasi Tradisi Lisan.
  • The faculties of Biology and Pharmacy of Universitas Gajah Mada and the faculty of Science of Universiteit Leiden started a twin laboratory in Yogyakarta. This laboratory, similar to the one in Leiden, concentrates on Zebrafish research and meets the highest standards of research in both Biology and Pharmacy. The laboratory will be used for nutritional and pharmaceutical purposes.
  • Ecosystem services associated to birds around oil palm plantations. Within this study, land use and oil palm plantation management in relation to bird-related ecosystem services will be investigated. 
  • Understanding the ecology system “plant-herbivore interaction” to improve carbon capture and sequestration and the anthropogenic impact to this system. The project focuses on the resilience of  tropical intertidal “blue carbon”seagrass meadows, grazed by Dugong (Dugong dugong) and the impact of anthropogenic stressors. This research is placed in Balikpapan Bay East Kalimantan, Indonesia.
  • The development of eDNA for quantifying biodiversity from freshwater ecosystem in oil palm plantation. eDNA is a new tool for assessing biodiversity. It is a rapid and consistent tool for detecting the animal community in certain area.  One of the challenges is that this tool needs optimation in fieldwork and lab work.
  • Helminth infections and type 2 diabetes mellitus in Indonesia (SUGARSPIN) - In Indonesia, environmental and lifestyle changes are altering the diseases landscape in the country, from infectious diseases to non-communicable inflammatory disorders, including type 2 diabetes mellitus (DM2). This programme will try to identify the mechanisms underlying this transition, through an interdisciplinary approach.
  • Indonesian Mother Child study - This study addresses the development of immune responses in children born to helminth-infected versus helminth-free mothers, and whether there were differences in terms of immune responses to vaccinations or with respect to allergic outcomes.
  • The faculties of Biology and Pharmacy of Universitas Gajah Mada and the faculty of Science of Universiteit Leiden started a twin laboratory in Yogyakarta. This laboratory will be used a.o. for pharmaceutical purposes.

Integrated approach

Urban Transitions: towards sustainability and wellbeing

Since 2018 Leiden University also builds an overarching interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary, collaborative programme on Sustainable Development Goals: Urban challenges. Representatives of six Faculties and their partners at Universitas Indonesia, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Delft University and Erasmus University develop a multi annual research programme on combined Heritage, Sustainability and Health questions.  Summer Academies are being organized on an annual basis, to discuss progress in the various projects.

See also: Unstoppable urbanisation of Indonesia calls for interdisciplinary partnerships

City life has come suddenly to modern Indonesia. Less than a century ago, only five percent of Indonesians lived in urban centres. Today, more than half of the population does. Indonesia's cities are places of growth, innovation, and inspiration. The country has embraced them, its successive governments making little attempt to control their explosive growth, and its citizens migrate to them more often because of the expanding urban opportunities rather than because of intensifying rural problems.
 
Yet now, as in the past, Indonesian cities are also arenas of confrontation and crisis. This is where cultures, classes, and faiths meet and sometimes clash, where disruptive as well as productive ideas are born; where an affluent creative class stands face to face with the poverty of the informal sector, and where commercial skyscrapers loom symbolically over past monuments of nation and faith.
 
Indonesian cities are also places where authorities and citizens wrestle with ecological and public health challenges of huge proportions. As river catchments are deforested and the sea level rises, disastrous flooding affects millions in densely populated coastal towns. There is also dangerous pollution of air and water from vehicles, industry, and domestic waste, and a wholesale transformation of the disease environment from one dominated by infection to one dominated by metabolic and cardiovascular problems, allergies, and asthma. Understanding the complex processes underlying the spread of such diseases in urban centres is crucial if we are to develop innovative responses to the global epidemic of non-communicable diseases.
 
Cities are where the future of Indonesia will be made and decided. Many of the challenges facing Indonesian cities echo similar challenges, past and present, in the Netherlands, long an urbanized country - albeit one without megacities - and one with a long history of urban planning, water management, and other interventions in relation to urban growth. The Urban Transitions programme is designed to focus and support international collaborative research between Indonesia and the Netherlands, and to promote sustainable inter- and multi-disciplinary approaches to old and new urban challenges, in both Indonesia and elsewhere.

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