Universitas Pembangunan Jaya (UPJ) won the Matching Fund organized by Kedaireka, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research, and Technology of Indonesia. Funds of 230 million IDR were granted through proposals related to the pilot feasibility study of the urban studies master’s program. The small campus in the Bintaro Jaya, Tangerang Selatan, area has demonstrated its track record in excellence in urban studies related to infrastructure, civil engineering, architecture, area management, urban lifestyle, and wellbeing. UPJ turns a decade this September 2021. The winning of the Matching Fund proposal fronted by Agustinus Agus Setiawan, UPJ Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs; and Elisabeth Rukmini, head of UPJ’s Strategic Planning Unit; has provided new opportunities for UPJ to further contribute to the development of urban studies in Indonesia.
The Matching Fund from Kedaireka requires the collaboration of university personnel with the business and industrial world (DUDI) and with international higher education institutions. Specifically carrying out urban studies, with its track record, UPJ has a close collaboration with Dresden University of Technology (TU Dresden), especially the Faculty of Environmental Sciences and the Senior Professorship of Professor Bernhard Mueller who has engaged since many decades in international urban and regional development studies and related master’s programmes. TU Dresden is one of the world’s top colleges at 173 in the world. Meanwhile, the industry sector, which collaborated with UPJ in this proposal, is PT Pembangunan Jaya. As the name implies, the Matching Fund demands real collaboration from collaborators. Therefore, through Kedaireka, the government provides funds that are at least equal to the contributions of the collaborators. In this case, PT Pembangunan Jaya allocates full support to UPJ. At the same time, collaborators from international universities dedicate the time and energy of their experts as companions in the feasibility study of establishing a Master of Urban Studies study program at UPJ.
Prof. Bernhard Mueller is a consultant and main collaborator in this pilot feasibility study of the urban studies master’s program at UPJ. Prof. Mueller, who has also been an expert at the United Nations on the New Urban Agenda, expressed his appreciation for the Ministry of Education and Research and Technology for the Matching Fund initiative: “I am proud of the Indonesian government’s idea to encourage university collaboration with industry and world universities. I am sure that the opportunity given to Pembangunan Jaya University to pioneer a master’s study program in urban studies in collaboration with us will be a real contribution to strengthening urban studies scholars in Indonesia. The programme will complement our joint cooperation activities in the field of urban sustainability which are supported by the German Alexander von Humboldt Foundation since some years.” Furthermore, he hopes that the initiative will bear fruit in the establishment of a multidisciplinary Masters in Urban Studies with a dynamic curriculum and mentors following efforts to solve urban problems in Indonesia.
Meanwhile, Mr. Trisna Muliadi, as CEO of PT. Pembangunan Jaya would like to thank Kedaireka for granting this Matching Fund. “This collaboration between PT Pembangunan Jaya and UPJ, which the Matching Fund fully supports, is an award for us. We are ready to support UPJ in contributing to the development of human resources for solutions to the needs of experts in the field of urban studies.” The CEO of PT Pembangunan Jaya is confident that the contributions of the directors of its 17 subsidiaries and field managers will provide real input for the needs of urban studies masters graduates who are ready to fill in their business units positions and other industrial sectors.
The Rector of UPJ and the authors of the pilot feasibility study proposal for the Master of Urban Studies study program expressed their joy after this Matching Fund proposal. The Rector stated, “UPJ is ready to move forward in the field of Urban Studies through a feasibility study for the establishment of a new study program.” As the author of the proposal, Elisabeth Rukmini, said, “This proposal aims to live up to the strategic plan that UPJ has written to excel in urban studies.” The track record of collaboration in urban studies has proved UPJ’s focus on urban studies. Furthermore, the networks from Germany’s universities and the Consortium for Urban Studies in Southeast Asia have strengthened UPJ to mainstream urban studies. Agustinus Agus Setiawan, UPJ’s Vice-Rector for academic affairs, agreed that UPJ had made history with the courage to study multidisciplinary Urban Studies. “Hopefully, our efforts will make a real contribution to the nation and state of Indonesia,” he said.