News article | 29-07-2022 | 05:43
Last week, the Embassy had the honor of welcoming to Indonesia the Dutch Minister of Education, Culture and Science, HE Robbert Dijkgraaf. Dijkgraaf led his first-ever knowledge mission with a delegation consisting of presidents of Dutch knowledge institutions, aimed at strengthening cooperation and academic exchange between the Netherlands and Indonesia. Given that Indonesia is a focus country for Dijkgraaf’s ministry and human capital development is high on the Indonesian government’s agenda, the visit fell on fertile ground.
The knowledge mission started with visits to the National Agency for Research and Innovation (BRIN) and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research and Technology (KemendikbudRistek). Both being particle physicists, there was a clear chemistry between Minister Dijkgraaf and BRIN Chairman Handoko. The meeting between Minister Dijkgraaf and his Indonesian counterpart, Minister Nadiem Anwar Makarim, again showed the good state of bilateral relations on a personal level.
They not only share that they became ministers with no prior political experience – Makarim founded Indonesian tech giant Gojek – but are also inspirational speakers. During their “fireside chat” at Erasmus Huis, Dijkgraaf and Makarim spoke with students about the role technology plays these days and their plans for ensuring socially safe learning environments. Other parts of the program included Dijkgraaf’s keynote speech at Universitas Indonesia, as well as meetings with students, alumni, Indonesian Young Academy (ALMI) and researchers.
That the bilateral relationship in the field of knowledge and talent exchange is already excellent has been demonstrated by the signing of numerous letters of intent and memorandums of understanding between governments and knowledge institutions. In the years to come, we hope to see these agreements translated into concrete programs of cooperation.
We consider this first knowledge mission a great success. For me personally, the preparation for this visit was the main reason for being seconded to the Political Affairs Department of the Embassy of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. This particular form of knowledge and talent exchange will be continued next year, when an education and science attaché will be assigned to the mission in Jakarta.
Please stay tuned for updates on bilateral education and scientific cooperation in the meantime. In October, the Embassy and Nuffic Neso will for example organize the third Indonesian-Dutch Education and Research Week (WINNER).
All my wishes,