CAUSINDY Update: Our first confirmed speaker

This week, the conference team are excited to announce Prof. Dr. Dewi Fortuna Anwar as our first confirmed speaker for CAUSINDY 2014. Professor Anwar was a key supporter of CAUSINDY in its first year, and we’re thrilled to be working with her in September this year.

Apply to become a delegate today, and you could be asking her questions this time in September!

New this week

Apply for CAUSINDY 2014

With applications now open, it’s time to update your resume andprepare your application for this year’s conference. Check out ourfrequently asked questions for more on the application process, selection criteria, and deadlines.

Apply now →

Dewi Fortuna Anwar to speak at CAUSINDY 2014

dewifortunaanwarThis week, the conference team are excited to announce the confirmation of Prof. Dr. Dewi Fortuna Anwar, M.A., as a speaker at the 2014 Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth in Jakarta this September.

Professor Anwar is currently Deputy Secretary for Political Affairs to the Vice President of the Republic of Indonesia. She is also a Research Professor and held the position of the Deputy Chairman for Social Sciences and Humanities at The Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) from 2001-2010.

She is also the Chair of the Institute for Democracy and Human Rights at The Habibie Center, and a member of the Board of Advisors, The Institute for Peace and Democracy, The Bali Democracy Forum. Dewi Anwar briefly held the position of Assistant to the Vice President for Global Affairs (May-July 1998) and that of Assistant Minister/State Secretary for Foreign Affairs (August 1998-November 1999), during the Habibie administration.

Prof. Anwar was a member of the UN Secretary General’s Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters (2008-2012), a member of the Weapons of Mass Destruction Commission (WMDC), based in Stockholm, and a member of the International Advisory Board of the Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy, ANU, Australia. She obtained her PhD from Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, while her BA (Hons) and MA were obtained from SOAS, University of London.

Professor Anwar was a key supporter of the first Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth, and we look forward to her joining us in Jakarta this September.

CAUSINDY Update: Embracing fear and risk

With applications open for CAUSINDY 2014, we’re already impressed with the number — and quality — of applications we’ve received! Be sure to submit yours before July 1.

This newsletter includes some of our favourite reading from the week, including from 2013 delegate Ross Tapsell.

Selamat membaca!

New this week

Apply for CAUSINDY 2014

With applications now open, it’s time to update your resume andprepare your application for this year’s conference. Check out ourfrequently asked questions for more on the application process, selection criteria, and deadlines.

Apply now →

Video: Embracing discomfort and risk

“It was January, 1998, and we were so fixed on the quest for culture and local knowledge that we kind of forgot about politics…”

This week’s video from the first Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth offers a personal take on cultural exchange in the bilateral relationship.

Dr Jacqui Baker argues that “no amount of competence can triumph the simple human awkwardness of relationships” — instead, we should embrace discomfort and risk and reach for common interests and curiosities.

Jacqui Baker is a Visiting Fellow at the Australian National University’s College of Asia and the Pacific. She is currently writing a book on police reform and embarking on a new project on criminal monies in Southeast Asia.

Listen to her documentary Eat Pray Mourn on the Radio National website, or read her observations on producing the program.

This video originally appeared on the AIYA Blog.

CAUSINDY Update: Applications are open!

It’s been nearly a week since applications opened for this year’s Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth and already, we’ve been impressed by the quality of candidates. We’re looking forward to receiving more!

This is the first of a series of weekly updates from the conference team, which will cover news and events about CAUSINDY, as well as our favourite reading on the Australia-Indonesia relationship. Selamat membaca!

Get these updates by email

The year so far

Apply for CAUSINDY 2014

With applications now open, it’s time to update your resume andprepare your application for this year’s conference. Check out ourfrequently asked questions for more on the application process, selection criteria, and deadlines.

Apply now →

Join our mailing list

Subscribe to the CAUSINDY mailing list to receive these updates direct to your inbox every week!

Applications open for CAUSINDY 2014


It’s been a long wait, but we’re excited to officially open applications for this year’s Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth, taking place in Jakarta for the first time.

Find out more →

CAUSINDY 2014 is your opportunity to connect with leaders from business, government and academia and join a network of young people with a passion for the Australia-Indonesia relationship.

Delegates take part in an exciting four-day program, including panel discussions, social and networking events. Successful delegates will have their travel and accommodation expenses subsidised.

Apply now →

Applications close on the 1st of July. If you have any questions, ideas, or feedback about the conference, we’d love to hear from you!

Announcing CAUSINDY 2014


This week, we’re excited to announce the official launch of the 2014 Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth! This year’s conference will be held in Jakarta from the 14th to the 17th of September.

This announcement marks an important milestone for CAUSINDY: our second conference, and the first to be held in Indonesia.

Last year, CAUSINDY created a network of young Indonesians and Australians who care and respect the relationship, and whose communication and cooperation are already extending beyond the conference and into their careers and personal lives.

It is these young people who will lead the relationship in the future, and their experiences and contacts from CAUSINDY will contribute to closer ties between our two countries. This year’s conference will build again on this important network.

Applications for this year’s conference will open on the 1st of May. To stay in the loop on conference news and events, join our mailing list or following CAUSINDY on Facebook and Twitter.

CAUSINDY welcomes the support of Asialink

The CAUSINDY team is excited to announce the support of Asialink for the 2014 Conference of Australian and Indonesian Youth. Asialink’s assistance, including recommending speakers and topics for the conference, will help to ensure a successful gathering of the best young minds in the Australian-Indonesian relationship.

Asialink is Australia’s leading centre for the promotion of public understanding of the countries of Asia and of Australia’s role in the region. It works with business, government, philanthropic and cultural partners to initiate and strengthen Australia-Asia engagement on all levels and across all sectors.

The organisation excels in “soft diplomacy” – delivering high-level forums, international collaborations, leadership training, education, community health and cultural exchange programs in Australia and Asia.

Asialink was founded in 1991 with the support of The Myer Foundation and The University of Melbourne. It established a Sydney office in 2013 and its Asialink Leaders Program runs each year in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

Its sister organisation, the Asia Education Foundation, is Australia’s leading organisation dedicated to advocating and supporting the study of Asia and Asian languages in primary and secondary schools.

Its business capability division – Asialink Business – works with assistance from the Commonwealth Department of Industry and the Australian business community to equip Australia’s workforce to engage successfully with the Asian region.

Learn more about Asialink on their website.

Asialink’s support is a tremendous asset to CAUSINDY. We look forward to their support in making this year’s conference program a success.

Looking beyond ‘Beef, boats, and Bali’

This article by the Indonesia Institute’s Ross Taylor first appeared in The West Australian in September, 2013.

The PM-elect Tony Abbott got off to a good start in building trust and a good working relationship with Indonesia. His telephone conversation last week with Indonesia’s president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, (SBY) has set the scene for both countries to co-operate in the implementation of the coalition’s ‘turn back the boats’ policy.

Indonesia knows that good relations between our two countries are critical at this time throughout the region, and particularly as both the USA and China are now positioning themselves as the regional superpower.

The danger for Australia’s incoming government however, is that Indonesia has a democratic electoral system as robust as that in Australia, and as Indonesia now heads into its own national pre-election period, a ‘turn back the boats’ policy could easily become a strong point of nationalism in Indonesia used by opposition parties, for domestic political purposes, to portray Australia as the big and arrogant southern neighbour.

And the suggestion by Mr Abbott that Australia would buy old fishing boats and pay village wardens to ‘dob in’ people smugglers is seen by most Indonesians-including senior government officials-as silly and quite offensive to Indonesia.

Mr Abbott will therefore need to handle this matter with great skill and diplomacy because at some stage, if the coalition government desires to build a deeper relationship with this emerging giant of 240 million people situated on our doorstep, the focus will need to move beyond not only the ‘boats’, but also beyond the other two dominant issues that sucks any oxygen out of larger and more significant issues facing our two countries: Beef and Bali.

The term ‘Beef, Boats and Bali’ was coined on the recent ABC ‘Q&A’ program that was filmed live in Jakarta. It was a phrase that did in a way summarise how many Australians see our relationship with Indonesia; a relationship built upon misperceptions, fear and a narrow community mindset that is trapped in a twenty year-old time warp.

The PM-elect and his soon-to-be foreign minister may therefore, as a first step, take a look at a snapshot of how Australians view today’s Indonesia. The recent survey conducted within Australia by our own Department of Foreign Affairs revealed a community perception of Indonesia that is insightful but disturbing in its misunderstanding of our near neighbour:

  • 50% see Indonesia as a military threat to Australia.
  • 53% see Indonesia as having an undemocratic political system.
  • 50% see Indonesia as having laws based on the Islamic code.
  • 20% of Australians see Bali as an independent nation,
  • and the two words most associated with Indonesia were ‘Holidays’ and ‘Muslims’.

Ironically, very few Australians see Indonesia as it really is: the absolute opposite of the above. These misperceptions are often fuelled by politicians who seem only to focus on the ‘three B’s’, and also some sections of our electronic media who appear interested only in the latest Bali holiday disaster.

The second thing that Ms Bishop should consider doing is to attend the inaugural Conference of Australia & Indonesia Youth in Canberra next month. Thirty youth leaders from both countries will attend this event that has the appropriate title, ‘Our turn to decide’. They are right, as these young people can provide our foreign minister with an honest and achievable vision for the future, and some good starting points.

These could include making it easier for our youth to move more freely between our respective shores; to be able to work, holiday and learn without bureaucratic red tape that makes it simply too hard at present for many young people.

We need to look how more young people from Indonesia can undertake temporary work here in the hospitality and tourism sectors, and how young Australians can live and study in Indonesia. In this regard the coalition’s reverse ‘Colombo Plan’ is an excellent initiative.

As part of the review of our foreign aid budget for Indonesia we need to ensure the focus is on how to lift the living standards and education of young people into the 21st century. Indonesia is already number three in the World for Facebook usage and number two for Twitter, yet online banking using smart phone technology is almost non-existent. Their youth are ‘high tech’ savvy, but the country’s internet infrastructure is rundown and outdated. Here is an opportunity for Australia to make a difference.

So whilst the immediate challenge for Mr Abbott and Ms Bishop will be about turning around the boats, there must be a broader agenda to completely review the relationship to move beyond the too often used cliché, of needing, ‘to build closer ties’ because without a coherent plan they indeed become ‘just words’.

The ‘Indonesia Strategy’ as developed by DFAT provides the framework for a substantial upgrading of the bi-lateral relationship. Australia and Indonesia are very different in many respects but we are also natural partners. Therefore the sooner we start to look beyond ‘Beef, Boats and Bali’, the sooner we will genuinely strengthen the relationship, starting by re-focusing on our young people, language skills, technology, and exchange programs. Then business, cultural and educational opportunities will flow to benefit both countries, and the region.

It’s just a matter of whether the new PM and his foreign minister are willing to seriously invest in a new and more vibrant relationship with our close – and very youthful – neighbour.

All the indications are that they will.

Ross Taylor AM is the Chairman of the Indonesia Institute (Inc) and Australia’s 2013 ‘Presidential Friend of Indonesia’.

Building the youth relationship

In this new series, we’re speaking to young Australians and Indonesians who have had personal experience in the bilateral relationship. For our first post, we spoke to Clare Price, a young Australian with a background in communications and media.

What is your background with Indonesia?

Sebenarnya hubungan saya dengan Indonesia terjadi lewat Ibu saya. Dia bekerja sebagai guru bahasa Indonesia sejak saya kecil, dan dari awal ibu menginginkan saya belajar bahasa Indonesia. Saya belajar bahasa Indonesia di SMP dan SMA kemudian di universitas juga. Pertama kali saya ke Indonesia adalah pada saat saya berumur 10 tahun, saya ke Bali dengan ibu saya, dan tentu saja saya jatuh cinta dengan pulau Bali. Ketika saya umur 15 tahun saya mengunjungi Sulewesi Selatan juga.

My mum introduced me to Indonesia. She worked as an Indonesian teacher, and encouraged me to study the language. I studied Indonesian in primary, secondary school, and at university. I visited Indonesia for the first time when I was 10, to Bali, and was blown away. I also visited South Sulawesi at 15.

Your blog gives an amazing snapshot of life in Jakarta – and some of the most interesting are the everyday observations. What were the highlights?

Ada banyak hal sehari-hari di Indonesia yang menarik. Misalnya, kegiatan-kegiatan yang terjadi di setiap tepi jalan di Indonesia yaitu kaki lima yang jual makanan yang eksotik, dan ribuan orang yang habiskan waktu di tepi jalan, nonkrong namanya. Ketika saya tinggal di Jakarta ada seekor penyu yang besar sekali yang tinggal di dalam pasar ikan di ujung gang saya. Penyunya suka makan pepaya. Hal lain yang menarik adalah masyarakat kreatif di Jakarta yang besar, selalu ada eksibisi seni,foto dan band-band lokal yang main juga banyak orang-orang yang ingin berbagi ide-ide serta kreasi dalam dunianya.

In Indonesia, there are so many interesting things happening in everyday life: activities on the side of the road, kaki lima and people sitting and chatting with friends everywhere. In Jakarta, a huge turtle lived in the fish market at the end of my street, I used to feed it papaya. Another interesting aspect of life in Jakarta is the city’s huge creative community – there’s always an art or photography exhibition opening or local band playing.

How do you see people-to-people links between Australia and Indonesia growing?

Hubungannya antara orang Australia dan orang Indonesia akan terus tumbuh di masa depan, sebenarnya pada saat ini hubungannya sudah kuat sekali. Indonesia dan Australia adalah tetangga, dan karena itu, seharusnya bekerja sama dan berbagi pengalaman-pengalaman terkait perdagangan, pembangunan, politik dan pendidikan.

The people-to-people links between Australian and Indonesian will continue grow – building on what’s already been established. Indonesia and Australia are neighbours, and will always have trade, development, politics and education links.
What role do you think aid plays in shaping Indonesia’s perceptions of Australia?

Pasti program bantuan dari Australia akan membentuk persepsi orang Indonesia tentang Australia. Juga hal lain seperti budaya, politik dan olahraga membentuk persepsi tersebut. Apa yang paling penting adalah program bantuan Australia di Indonesia adalah program yang berhasil, yang mengurangi kemiskinan, memperkuat pelayanan-pelayanan kesehatan, membangun sekolah-sekolah di daerah yang terpencil dan menghentikan serta mencegah penyebaran penyakit seperti HIV/AIDS.

Absolutely Australia’s aid program affects Indonesia’s perception of Australia – along with cultural differences, politics, and sport. What’s most important is that Australia’s aid program in Indonesia continues to reduce poverty, strengthen health services, build schools and prevent the spread of diseases such as HIV/AIDS.
Indonesia is developing rapidly: where do you see Australia’s aid program in 10 years’ time?

Mudah-mudahan Indonesia tidak akan memerlukan program bantuan Australia di sepuluh tahun ke depan. Dan saya pikir AusAID pasti punya harapan yang sama. AusAID mau mendukung Pemerintah Indonesia sekarang dengan mengurangi tingkat kemiskinan di seluruh Indonesia, tetapi AusAID juga punya harapan besar bahwa Indonesia menjadi negara yang lebih daripada negara berkembang sehinggah tidak memerlukan program bantuan lagi.

Those working in aid hope to work themselves out of a job! The aid community works with the goal that Indonesia won’t need Australian aid in 10 years. AusAID is willing to support the Indonesian government in its efforts to reduce poverty, but as Indonesia is growing at such a rapid pace, aid wont always be required.