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LIPI Calls for Govt Help in Boosting Indonesia's Research Sector

posted Oct 2, 2015, 1:35 AM by Brook Ross
Published in The Jakarta Globe, September 02, 2015

Head of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences, Iskandar Zulkarnain, lamented the low number of researchers in the archipelago, calling on the government to interfere and step up its support in boosting the country's research sector.  The country has only 40 researchers to every one million people in its 250 million population, Iskandar said on Wednesday.  “That is the ratio for full-time researchers; it doesn't include university lecturers,” Iskandar said during an event at the science institute's (LIPI) headquarters in Jakarta.

The figure is a smidgen compared to the researcher-population rations of other Asian countries, he added.  India, for example, has more than three times Indonesia's researcher-population ratio, with 140 researchers for every one million people.  “Japan has approximately 5,000 researchers [for every one million people]; Korea has 5,500 researchers; and the highest is Israel with 6,500 researchers to every one million citizens,” Iskandar said.

The LIPI head has called on the government to help with the matter, appealing officials to boost funds allocated for research throughout Indonesia, as well as to review related policies.  Iskandar pointed to university researchers as an example. University staff must be allowed to alternate between focusing on research and teaching, he said, “Under the economic principle, we must aim for maximum profit at a minimum cost. But we cannot apply this to research,” Iskandar said. “We need the government to side with us on this matter.”
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