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Jakarta Post

We all want to be smart alecks — right?

Canberra   /   Tue, January 7, 2020   /  01:26 pm
We all want to be smart alecks — right? Just nine Indonesian universities have made it into the 2020 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) list of the world’s top 1,000 tertiary institutions. There are about 4,500 universities in the country. (Shutterstock/Yuttana Jaowattana)

It would be funny if it wasn’t such a floundering for relevance. Indonesian universities are staging “international conferences” headlined by overseas academics told to use English even when they are fluent in Indonesian. Often, they’re addressing a largely bewildered audience. It’s the response by some campus administrators to President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s demands that tertiary educators lift their game and make Indonesia a clever country. Recently Nadirsyah Hosen, a senior lecturer in law at Australia’s Monash University, told a conference at the Australian National University (ANU) that he’d been asked to present a particular paper on an Indonesian campus. However, when he delivered, he found another document had been downloaded “because it was more interesting”. “It was clear few could unders...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.