Focus Group Discussion on Collaborative Research with Foreign Policy Strategy Agency (BSKLN) The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia

A Focus Group Discussion (FGD) which coordinated by the ASEAN Studies Center of Universitas Gadjah Mada and  of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Indonesia was successfully held on Tuesday, 8 September 2021 through the online platform, Zoom. The discussion was conducted to support a research titled “Indonesia’s Chairmanship in ASEAN 2023: Optimizing the Strengthening of the ASEAN E-Commerce Sector in order to Accelerate Economic Recovery” and is a continuation of the first FGD which was held on 2 July 2021.

The discussion was led by Research Lead, Pulung Setiosuci Perbowani and gathered 8 panelists representing (1) the marketplaces, namely Balques Manisang (Shopee); Ferdi Anggriawan (Go-Jek); Bondan Trihadi Magetian (Bukalapak); (2) e-commerce business actors: Dea Mariska Aprillah (Spartan Apparel); (3) Consumer: Ika Kurnia Riswandari (Indonesian, ASEAN, and Southeast Asian user of marketplaces); (4) Financial Technology/Financial Authority: Andi Adityaning Palupi (Bank Indonesia Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta); and Fajar Eri Dianto (Telkom); and (5) Academia: Traheka Erdyas Bimanatya (Macro-Economist UGM).

The discussion took place in the talk show format and looked into the following topics, namely the mapping of a digital market, international market regulations, digital acceleration, payment method, and quality control as well as market strategy. This discussion also touched upon the long term prospect of e-commerce by peering into macroeconomic data. Traheka Erdyas Bimanatya pointed towards the fact that COVID-19 pandemic was not the cause of the digital market, but rather a catalyst for a transition to the digital market. E-commerce and physical stores are direct competitors, and therefore one mobility restrictions are lifted, consumers may return to shopping offline. As such, key players of e-commerce must strategize for the post-pandemic world if they wish to maintain their sales.

After the discussion session,  a question and answer session took place to entertain queries from researchers of the ASEAN Studies Center UGM. The event was closed by a closing statement from Muhammad Takdir, Head of Center for Foreign Policy Strategy for Asia-Pacific and Africa. In speech he highlighted the importance of adapting to the regional developments and, at the same time, linking it to our national interests, especially the interests of consumers and industries.

Chile-ASEAN Future Perspectives Dialogues

“The Chile-ASEAN Future Perspectives Dialogues” carrying the theme of theme “Socio-Cultural Identity and Community Building: Experience for Better Integration” was held on Tuesday, 7 September 2021. The Dialogue was coordinated by the Embassy of Chile and invited the ASEAN Studies Center UGM along with the Centre for International Studies of the University of Chile, and the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA).

This Dialogue commenced with opening remarks from Carolina Valdivia, Under Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Chile, Jorge Sahd, Director of the Center for International Studies of the University of Chile, and Gustavo Ayares, the Ambassador of Chile to Indonesia an ASEAN. All three speakers emphasized the importance of strengthening collaboration and cooperation between Chile and ASEAN to formulate new perspectives and collaborative plans among the two regions.

The discussion was moderated by Ambassador Gustavo Ayares and invited Nicole Jenne, Center of International Studies at UC, Guilia Ajmone Marsa, ERIA and Dr Riza Noer Arfani, ASEAN Studies Center UGM. The speakers highlighted several key messages including, ways acknowledging the socio-cultural ties shared by both regions and the developments which have stemmed from our shared history, the importance of community engagement, and economy as an entry point towards greater and tighter cooperation. Dr Riza highlighted the historical trajectories to achieve a foundation for community building between America Latin and ASEAN.

The Dialogue also discussed several priority areas of cooperation including digital development, economic perspectives, socio-cultural ties, connectivity, and future initiatives for ASEAN-Chile Integration. Further, the discussion underscored the importance of working together and continuous efforts to form a meaningful engagement between Chile and ASEAN member states. It is hoped that cooperation from these various sectors can create a mutually beneficial relationship for both regions.

Report by:
– Citta Azarine Azhar
– Munawar Wahid S
(Media Interns at ASC UGM)

Roundtable Discussion on ASEAN Women and Children Protection through Civil Society and Academic Participation

To continue the Public Lectures which was held on Monday, 30 August 2021 on ASEAN Women and Children Protection through Civil Society and Academic Participation, the ASEAN Studies Center at Universitas Gadjah Mada invited groups of academia and think-tanks and CSOs working in the field of child protection and women empowerment on Tuesday, 31 August 2021. These entities came together for a roundtable discussion to discuss the common challenges in realising the protection of women in the national and regional level, whether already established networks were available, issues that have the ACWC yet to cover and in what ways the academia as well as CSOs could support this effort.

This Roundtable Discussion was held to build a stronger engagement between the ACWC, CSOs as well as the academia and was briefly opened by Ms. Yuyum Fhahni Paryani as the lead moderator. Participants of the discussion were then divided into three panels. The first panel delved into the topic of the CSO (Women) Support to the Work of the ACWC which was facilitated by Ms. Vicky Barreto, a Development Specialist. The second panel discussed CSO (Children) Support to the Work of the ACWC the discussion of which was facilitated by Mr. Hafizh Noer, an Associate Fellow at Policy Lab. The last panel was facilitated by Mr. Tunggul Wicaksono, Research Manager at ASEAN Studies Center at Universitas Gadjah Mada discussing the topic of Think-tank and Academia Support to the Work of the ACWC.

Having discussed in separate groups, participants regathered for a Townhall discussion to share the output of each group. A discussant of the Session, H.E. Wan Noraidah binti Wan Mohd Zain, Director of Children Division at the Department of Social Welfare in Malaysia, noted the high interest for continued engagement to take place, the need to stablish an overview on areas of expertise among CSOs and Think Tank in women and child issues to further discuss possible methods of collaboration.

The roundtable discussion was convened to help map and overcome the current challenges of the ACWC, amid the pandemic and increasing priorities of the ACWC in implementing their work plan. The importance of working together was also noted by the meeting. In order to achieve this, the support from ASEAN Member States was noted as imminent.

The roundtable discussion convened at 13.00 and ended at 16.45.

Public Lecture on ASEAN Women and Children Protection through Civil Society and Academic Participation

The ASEAN Studies Center of Universitas Gadjah Mada, with the sipport of the Netherlands Embassy in Jakarta has conducted a series of discussions regarding the ASEAN Commission on the Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) to map possible engagement efforts with the aim of strengthening the promotion and protection of women and children in the region. The series of discussions have commenced since October 2020 following the commemoration of the 10th anniversary of the ACWC.

On Monday, 30 August 2021 a Public Lecture titled “ASEAN Women and Children Protection through Civil Society and Academic Participation” was held to further map potential roles that CSOs and think tanks can play to further advocate for the of women and children. The Lecture was officially opened by the opening remarks from Dr. Dafri Agussalim as the Executive Director of ASEAN Studies Center UGM, and H.E. Amb. Lambert Grijns as the Ambassador of the Kingdom of The Netherlands to Indonesia, Timor-Leste, and ASEAN.

This Public Lecture was attended by approximately 60 participants from across ASEAN members. Moderated by Ms. Yuyum Fhahni Paryani, former Indonesian Representative for the ACWC on Children’s Rights, the discussion invited four panelists namely Dato Paduka Dr Haji Junaidi bin Haji Abd. Rahman as the ACWC Chair and Brunei Darussalam’s Representative for Children’s Rights, Ms. Yanti Kusumawardhani, Indonesia’s Representative to the ACWC for Children’s Rights, Ms. Santi Kusumaningrum, Director of PUSKAPA – Center on Child Protection and Wellbeing at the University of Indonesia, and Ms. Rachel Tan, as Program Officer and focal point for the Women Gender and Diversity Working Group of the Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network (APRRN).

The discussion highlighted a number of issues including the role of CSOs and the academic community which is to support the State in undertaking the obligation as duty bearer in fulfilling the rights of Children, to contribute to CRC Alternative Report CRC in order to support the government efforts on implementing CRC including ensuring child participation, to undertake research on the situation and well-being of women and children, and contribute on implementing Concluding Observation of CRC beneficial as foundation works on measures to child rights realizations.

The academic community can also come together by directing the government towards three main areas of support for women and children: social protection, family support and specialized protection. These points are to be included in policy briefs/suggestions to inform policy makers of an added layer of vulnerability and risk experienced by children due to miscalculated policies.

The importance of participatory approaches was also highlighted during the discussion, especially on issues concerning refugee women and children. The ACWC can play a strategic role in engaging and consolidating the many different fronts and actors to prevent miscalculated policies from being found.

The discussion also invited discussants, namely H.E. Yuyun Wahyuningrum, the Representative of Indonesia to AICHR, Mr. Ali Aulia Ramly, Child Protection Specialist of UNICEF Indonesia, and Ms. Audrey Lee, Senior Program Manager at International Women’s Right Action Watch Asia-Pacific (IWRAW-AP).

The discussion was closed by Ms. Yuyum Fhani Paryani as the moderator with a summary of the discussion which was carried out.

Network of ASEAN-China Think-tanks (NACT) Working Group Meeting

“Public-Private Partnership in 30-year ASEAN-China Public Health Cooperation”

Friday, July 9th 2021, ASEAN Studies Center Universitas Gadjah Mada (ASC UGM) in collaboration with Chinese Foreign Affairs University (CFAU) has organized the NACT Working Group Meeting on “Public-Private Partnership in 30-year ASEAN-China Public Health Cooperation”. On behalf of both NACT Indonesia and NACT China, Dr. Wawan Mas’udi, the Dean of Faculty of Social and Political Sciences Universitas Gadjah Mada, delivered an opening speech to officially begin the meeting.

This working group meeting highlighted some issues related to the public health in China and Southeast Asia during the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic, however, does not only present challenges, but also gives opportunities to reform in what ways we can manage the public health, as it is one of the most important sectors that should be concerned by the governments in the region.

During the event, nine country representatives presented their national perspectives and current conditions in relation to the public-private partnerships in health sector. The presentations specifically covered the situations of China (two separate presentation by Prof. Qiao Youlin and Dr. Zhou Xingwu), Indonesia (by Dr. Luqman-nul Hakim), Myanmar (by Dr. Daw Khin Ma Ma Myo), Lao PDR (by Ms. Sounanda Bolivong), Malaysia (by Dr. Tan Ching Siang), Singapore (by Dr. Qian Jiwei), Vietnam (by Dr. Ha Thi Hong Van) and the Philippines (by Ricardo Benjamin D. Osorio and Kristina Azela B. Diza).

Through the presentations, it can be seen that several ASEAN Member States are experiencing circumstances which cannot be borne solely by the government alone. As most of these countries stated that the governments have limited resources—particularly in financing. Therefore, public-private partnerships have been seen as viable alternatives for the government in addressing financial issues. In the context of Covid-19 pandemic, these countries noted how the business communities have helped the government in mitigating the health crisis, from donating funds for the health care services and vaccine rollouts, providing medical supplies, to actively helping to maintain the stability of the food supply chain. However, in certain countries such as Vietnam and Indonesia, internal measures should be taken to fix and build a comprehensive system of mechanisms and policies that regulate the public-private partnerships, particularly in the health sector.

The meeting also discussed the possibility to formulate policy recommendations for the governments in ASEAN and China, that could eventually unite the sources, initiatives to ensure the well-being of citizens during this pandemic. The crisis we are all in certainly call for immediate discussion on how both public and private sectors can come together to tackle the mounting cases, and to prepare some strategic plans to accelerate the socio-economic recovery. “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much” as Dr. Dafri said while closing the working group meeting seemed to remind and at the same time invite the government, private enterprises, and civil society organisations to strengthen their constructive interactions in enhancing regional cooperation on public health sector.


Reported by Martin Alistair

Program and Research Intern

CSO Consultation on the Rights of Women and Children in ASEAN

On Friday 30 April 2021, the ASEAN Studies Center of Universitas Gadjah Mada in collaboration with the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) and supported by The Netherland Embassy in Jakarta held a Round Table Discussion (RTD) between the ASEAN Commission of Women and Children (ACWC) and CSOs across ASEAN member states.

The discussion was officially opened by the opening remarks from Mr. Dafri Agussalim as the Executive Director of ASEAN Studies Center UGM, Ms. Shamini Darshni Kaliemuthu as the Executive Director of FORUM-ASIA, and Prof. Roel van der Veen as a representative of Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands in Indonesia.

This forum also constructed a consultation with the CSOs on the rights of women and children in ASEAN that has a purpose to facilitate discussions between CSOs working in human rights, particularly on women’s and children’s right in order to increase the involvement of CSOs in the work of women and children’s rights in ASEAN with ACWC. It is expected to formulate outcomes in the form of recommendations for ACWC workplan 2021-2025, ideal working mechanism between ACWC and CSOs by strengthening its ToR, and an outlook for ASEAN CSOs involvement in the works of ACWC.

In opening the RTD, H.E. Yuyum Fhahni Paryani, Indonesian Representative of the ACWC (Children), shed light on the work, success, and challenges of the ACWC through its ten years of establishment, and highlighted the importance of collaboration among CSO to promote and uphold women and children. The opening presentation was then followed by the RTD, which was navigated by Yuniyanti Chuzaifah, a former National Commission on Violence against Women (KOMNAS Perempuan), as lead facilitator.

The RTD consisted of three panels that discussed issues pertinent to enhance further engagement between CSOs on women and children from across the region. The forum was divided into three parallel panels. Thi first delved into the topic of the “ACWC Work-plan and its alignment with the ASEAN Comprehensive Recovery Framework” which was facilitated by Karina Larasati BR, a senior fellow of Policy Lab. The second panel touched on the subject of a “Reporting Mechanism of Cases and an ASEAN Live Database of Violations against Women and Children” the discussion of which was facilitated by Desi Hanara, the Southeast Asia Regional Coordinator of Freedom of Religion or Belief, ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights (APHR). The last panel, through the facilitation of facilitated Rachel Arinii Judhistari, FORUM-ASIA, discussed the “ACWC – CSOs Engagement Mechanism”. The RTD aimed to provide a consultation session between CSOs working on the rights of women and children in ASEAN and their representatives at the regional level, while at the same time providing input to the work plan of the ACWC.

A Townhall Session, as facilitated by Lead Facilitator, Yuniyanti Chuzaifah, collated all points of discussion, input, and possible ways forward towards a better engagement between ACWC and CSOs in promoting and protecting women and children. In light of the unrest in Myanmar, participants of the RTD took part in a photo session, with the three fingers salute pose, as popularised by activists in Myanmar.

#ASEAN #SoutheastAsia #ASC #UGM #ACWC #CSO #RoundtableDiscussion #BringingASEANCloserToYou

Research Collaboration ASEAN Studies Center UGM – Center for Policy Analysis and Development (BPPK) for Asia-Pacific and Africa

Indonesia will assume the chair of ASEAN Chairmanship in 2023 and aim at a reviving the people-centered ASEANvalue in the effort to ground the concepts and benefits of the regional cooperation. However, considering the various challenges which have occurred in recent years, and notwithstanding the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in the economic and health sectors, this may prove to be testing. 

In line with efforts to recover the economy in the region and the importance of Indonesia playing a leading role in its chairmanship, the Agency for the Study and Policy Development of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia considers that one of the agendas for ASEAN’s cultivated sectors in need of further strengthening and developing is the optimization of economic cooperation. The sector of e-Commerce, particularly SMEs, developed into a buffer for the economy, has proven resilient in facing the global health and economic crisis. MSMEs in ASEAN have survived in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic with the advantages of their digital transaction services which are generally quite easy to get around and accommodate the need for implementing health protocols compared to other retail sectors that are direct selling. According to data, the MSME sector employs a workforce of up to 60-80% of total employment in ASEAN and has proven the ability to co-exist in the new normal era. 

In accordance with the duties and functions of the BPPK, the Center for Policy Analysis and Development for Asia-Pacific and Africa annually conducts collaborative study partnerships with partner universities related to issues that arise, both in the regional and global scope. The partnership review activity is intended to gather input and findings that can be processed into policy strategy recommendations related to the issues in question.

Pulung Setiosuci Perbawani, MM – Dr. Dafri Agussalim

This year, the ASEAN Studies Center UGM is appointed as partner in a research cooperation with the theme “Indonesia’s Chairmanship in ASEAN 2023: Optimizing Strengthening the ASEAN E-Commerce Sector in the Context of Accelerating Economic Recovery”.

On Thursday, 8 April 2021 a signing took place on the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the ASEAN Studies Center UGM and Center for Policy Analysis and Development (BPPK) for Asia-Pacific and Africa at the Grhatama Building, Regional Library and Archives Service D.I. Yogyakarta. The signing was carried out by the Head of Center for Policy Analysis and Development for Asia-Pacific and Africa, Muhammad Takdir together with the Executive Director of ASC UGM Dr. Dafri Agussalim, who was accompanied by Yulida Nuraini Santoso, M.Sc as the Managing Director of ASC UGM and Pulung Setiosuci Perbawani S.IP, MM as lead researcher of the research project.

Dr. Dafri Agussalim Director of ASEAN Studies Center UGM

#ASEAN #SoutheastAsia #ASC #ASEANStudiesCenter #PSA #UGM #Research #bppkkemlu #aspasaf #BRINGINGASEANCLOSERTOYOU


Network on ASEAN-China Think Tanks (NACT) Annual Meeting 2021

The 2021 NACT Annual Meeting, which also marks the 30th anniversary of the ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations, was held on March 19, 2021. In his opening remarks, President of China Foreign Affairs University (CFAU), Xu Jian, stated that in times of difficulties where the COVID-19 pandemic challenges multilateralism, it is the region’s ultimate fight to curb the virus’s spread while at the same time strengthen the commitment in regional partnership in coping with the adverse impacts on the social and economic sector.

On a similar note, Dr. Nguyen Hung Son, the Vice President of Diplomatic Academy of Viet Nam (DAV), acknowledged that the forum could be a platform to discuss and comprehend each view on the Southeast Asia region’s development. On this occasion, the panel is expected to promote good relationships and bring prosperity to the parties. As an essential dialogue partner, a substantive partnership among NACT members is needed in order to construct ideal regional architecture. In regards to current challenges, the foundation of the cooperation must be based on responsibility and responsiveness.

The moderated discussion was attended by nine keynote speakers from each of NACT members and was parted into two panels; (1) Economy and Sustainable Development in ASEAN – China Relations, moderated by Dr. To Minh Tu (DAV), and (2) Economy and Sustainable Development in ASEAN – China Relations, moderated by Prof. Guo Yanjun (CFAU). NACT Indonesia was represented by Mrs. Yulida Nuraini Santoso (Managing Director of ASEAN Studies Center, Universitas Gadjah Mada) with a research paper titled “Achieving Sustainable Development Goals by 2030: Reducing the Gap of Inequality through ASEAN-China Trade Relations.” In her statement, Mrs. Yulida proposed ways forward in eradicating inequality, such as strengthening the partnership between China and ASEAN, which is based on mutual benefits and exchanging innovation among international organizations.

The meeting was concluded with a hope to enhance mutual trust and understanding between China and ASEAN member states, as well as exchanging knowledge and perspective to ensure stability, resilience, and development in the region.

Network on ASEAN-China Think Tanks (NACT) Country Coordinators Meeting

In such challenging times, the spread of COVID-19 has caused the economic and social disruptions that shaped our world today. In some areas of interest, academicians play an integral role in the fight against the pandemic, particularly in recognizing the impacts and formulating the relevant policies targetting the vulnerable groups who are bearing the brunt.

Based on the background issue mentioned by NACT Viet Nam, this year’s Network on ASEAN-China Think Tank Country’s Coordinators Meeting (NACT CCM) was held on March 19, 2021, to discuss the general theme and working group proposals for the 2021 agenda. The country’s coordinators had attended the online meeting on the Webex platform. During the opening remarks, Dr. Gao Yanjun (representative of NACT China) stated that China and ASEAN must engage in future collaboration to bring sustainable development goals into action.

After considering several themes proposed by the country coordinators, the meeting concluded that the general theme of the 2021 NACT Working Group (NACT WG) meeting will focus on Multilateralism in Preparing for a Post-Pandemic Recovery. The NACT WG Meeting will tentatively be held in conjoint plan between NACT Singapore and NACT Indonesia mid-year.

Focus Group Discussion ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation: “”The Role of ICT as a Tool in Mitigating Conflict and Fostering Peace”


Monday, 25 January 2021 ASEAN Studies Center UGM attended Focus Group Discussion (FGD) organized by ASEAN Institute for Peace and Reconciliation with the main theme “The Role of ICT as a Tool in Mitigating Conflict and Fostering Peace”. ASC UGM was represented by Tunggul Wicaksono, Pulung S. Perbawani, Treviliana Eka Putri, and Joash Elisha Stephen Tapiheru.

This FGD by ASEAN-IPR was held for the first time in a hybrid format, attended by representatives from the Governing Council, Advisory Body, AWPR, and numerous think-tanks from across ASEAN countries. The purpose of this FGD is to bring together various views on ICT empowerment in peace reconciliation as well as provide a platform for collaboration and cooperation among think tanks in the region.

After the FGD session, Executive Director of ASEAN-IPR H.E. Amb. I Gusti Wesaka Puja paid a visit to the ASC-UGM office and met with the Chancellor of Universitas Gadjah Mada Prof. Ir. Panut Mulyono at the UGM Balairung Rectorate Office.

#ASC #UGM #AseanStudiesCenter #ASEAN #webinarseries #covid19 #Monograph #BringingASEANCloserToYou #ASEAN_IPR #FGD #asean_ipr_fgd