Greetings from Bandung!
On behalf of the Resilience Development Initiative (RDI), we wish you joyous holidays and a wonderful New Year! Our journey in 2023 was truly delightful, and we are thrilled to have had your presence with us. We appreciate every shared moment and hope for more future collaborations.
Closing Out the Year 2023
Throughout the year, we've undertaken a myriad of activities, successfully concluding various significant milestones. These outcomes stand as a testament to our expertise and commitment to excellence in consultancy and research. We've categorized this year’s highlights in the following paragraphs.
- Adaptive Social Protection and Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance
This year, we contributed significantly to furthering the concepts of Adaptive Social Protection (ASP) and Disaster Risk Financing and Insurance (DRFI). Most notably, In collaboration with UNICEF and Indonesia’s Ministry of Finance, we organized an ASEAN Side-event Seminar on Disaster Risk Financing and Adaptive Social Protection Implementation in Indonesia. This seminar conveyed significant steps Indonesia has taken in implementing the two concepts and shared such experiences with policymakers across Southeast Asia. This was part of a project to improve the timeliness and adequacy of social protection measures by linking it to Indonesia’s established DRFI strategy. We have supported further ASP initiatives at both the National and Sub-National levels. RDI was directly involved in helping the Ministry of National Development Planning (MoNDP) by developing ASP-related Background Studies for national development planning. At the Sub-National level, RDI developed “ASP Implementation Strategies” for Yogyakarta, East Nusa Tenggara, and West Nusa Tenggara. Further, alongside MoNDP, we assisted ASP training in DKI Jakarta, South Sulawesi, Yogyakarta, Maluku, NTB, and NTT. These efforts underscore our commitment to support ASP implementation in Indonesia.
- Climate and Disaster Displacement
This year, we continue our mission of addressing issues within Climate and Disaster Displacement. We concluded our three-year (2021-2023) Making Displacement Safer (MDS) initiative funded by GNDR. After enhancing the resilience of displaced communities in Garut (West Java) in the previous years, in 2023 we focused on advocating such solutions through our workshop with related ministries and local agencies involved in the issue. Further, we explored whether and how slow-onset climate impacts influence migration decisions, alongside the International Organization for Migration (IOM). This year we concluded findings in Demak (Central Java) and East Sumba (East Nusa Tenggara) and will continue this research in two other locations next year. In furthering the utilization of this knowledge to practitioners, we organized the "Managing Risk in the Face of Climate Change" training program, emphasizing socio-economic adaptations to climate change in various regions. This was implemented through collaborating with the Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation (WCDI), the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC), and the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB). The training was implemented in two batches, with 50+ future practitioners trained. Going forward, RDI will continue this collaboration to further knowledge-sharing of Indonesia’s climate impacts and adaptation measures.
- Global Health and Clean Air Development
We are dedicated to addressing critical health and air quality challenges. Throughout this year, we actively participated in initiatives aimed at advancing clean air strategies in Jakarta. Collaborating closely, with C40 Cities, we played a pivotal role in organizing workshops and capacity-building as part of the Jakarta Air Quality Monitoring project. This involvement encompassed active participation in Jakarta's Government Working Unit Meeting, developing the Low-cost Sensor Implementation Protocol, and successfully conducting the AQUA Tool & Transport Module Training. In addition, we also took part in the “Better Air Quality 2023 Conference” held in Manila. Furthering knowledge on improving health systems, RDI participated in the 9th Public Health Conference in Bangkok, organized by the Tomorrow People Organization. One of our Research Officers from our Global Health Working Group presented a study titled "Assessment of Indonesia's Health System Policy Readiness to Face Climate Change Threats: A Scoping Review of National Policies". This research demonstrates tangible evidence of our organization's commitment to addressing the health risks posed by climate change.
- Sustainable Waste Management
In the waste management sector, we actively support Indonesia's decarbonization goals and fuel-waste optimization to achieve the country’s NDC target. Our ongoing RDFact project, in collaboration with Australia’s Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment, and Water, and Indonesia's Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources focuses on refuse-derived fuel (RDF) optimization. This long-term initiative (2023-2025) includes capacity-building, workshops, publication writing, and study tours in Indonesia and Australia. In partnership with Tetra Tech, we supported the Clean Cities Blue Ocean (CCBO) project by analyzing the waste collection and transportation efficiency analysis in the Biringkanaya District, Makassar. The project provides recommendations to enhance waste collection and transportation efficiency for the districts. Further, we collaborated with NIES (National Institute for Environmental Studies) to support the study to establish a preliminary understanding of waste management practices and analysis of river waste flow and composition in Jakarta, focused on the Ciliwung River's significant role in flood events, this research provides foundational insights into waste management behaviors related to flood risk reduction. Moreover, with iDE Cambodia, we researched the impacts of agricultural plastics and promoted alternatives like enhancing durability, recycling, and improving waste management for sustainable agriculture. Additionally, we researched plastic packaging waste management and recycling in Jakarta, Tangerang, and Medan in Indonesia in collaboration with Deloitte Indonesia.
- Other Sustainability and Resilience Studies and Projects
Furthering our contribution to resilience and sustainability studies in Southeast Asia, we were involved in several strategic projects. In supporting the aim of developing an ASEAN-level certification for disaster management experts, we continued our collaboration with the AHA Centre to develop the ASCEND Program (The ASEAN Standards and Certification for Experts in Disaster Management). This year, we held workshops in Cebu, Philippines, and Ho Chi Minh, Viet Nam, to shape the new framework and competency standards and develop the sustainability strategy for the ASCEND Programme.
We collaborated with the Urban Study Foundation (USF), to organize a Conference on Overlooked Cities in Asia. This conference contributes to evolving discussions in urban studies and geography, providing fresh perspectives on urban life from the standpoint of overlooked and ordinary cities. We brought together notable experts from all over Asia to discuss how cities can be more inclusive, vibrant, and sustainable.We also evaluated the Sustainable Use of Peatland and Haze Mitigation in ASEAN (SUPA, Component 2) implemented by the World Resources Institute (WRI). This assessment of the 2nd Component’s achievement of designated outputs, outcomes, and results is outlined in the program design document and result framework. We surveyed peat rangers and business cohorts in seven ASEAN countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.
In Indonesia, we also implemented the Urban Community Resilience Assessment (UCRA) in Makassar, developed in collaboration with the World Resources Institute (WRI). This advanced framework evaluates municipality-level vulnerability through numerous indicators. Highlighting key vulnerabilities from the mobility aspects, and guiding policymaking for resilience through evidence-based advocacy activities.
- New Center: The Environment, Agriculture and Forestry Resilience Center
As part of our commitment to foster nature-based projects, we established the Center for Environment, Agriculture, and Forestry Resilience (EAFOR) this year. It stands as a vanguard of environmental stewardship and is rooted in the understanding that our environment is interconnected with the well-being of human societies.
Our Commitment to Academic Outputs
Our research institution has achieved a noteworthy milestone in the current year by producing and releasing 33 publications across various formats, including journal articles, op-eds, book chapters, policy briefs, white papers, proceedings, and reports. These publications are crucial in advancing academic knowledge and broadly impact academics, government institutions, and communities. One example of our recent work is a scoping review protocol titled "Adaptation of Health Systems to Climate Change-related Infectious Disease Outbreaks in the ASEAN," published as a journal article on PLOS ONE [Link]. Additionally, we explored the readiness of ASEAN for future pandemics in a journal article titled "Is ASEAN Prepared for Future Pandemics?," featured in ASEAN Focus 2023: Sustainable Transformation [Link]. Another contribution includes a book chapter on the spatial pattern of COVID-19 positivity rates in Indonesia during local restriction phases, part of the publication "The Role of GIS in COVID-19 Management and Control" by Routledge [Link]. To access more of our publications, please visit rdi.or.id
Expanding Our Networks
As we reflect on the conclusion of our remarkable 17th year, we are thrilled to share the exciting news of our expanding networks globally. This year, we extended our networks overseas, forging meaningful connections in Indonesia, the Southeast Asia region, the UK, Australia, and Canada. This year, we visited more than 20 institutions, fostering valuable connections and securing collaborations for upcoming sustainable and resilient projects. We initiated collaborations with PT MRT Jakarta, Tani Kota, LATUN, University of the Philippines Los Baños, The Ho Chi Minh City University of Social Sciences and Humanities, and various other entities. Ahead of 2024, we aimed to promote sustainable and resilient research and projects across Southeast Asia.
Looking Towards 2024: Notable Projects and Initiatives in 2024
- Establishment of a Training Centre
This year, we are in the process of establishing a training center aimed at enhancing qualifications, particularly for early-career researchers and young professionals in sustainable development and resilience. The center is scheduled to be launched in 2024, catering to fresh graduates, early-career researchers, academics, NGOs, and offering tailor-made courses for governments, universities, and the private sector. Through these initiatives, our goal is to enhance capacity for sustainable development and resilience.
- KONEKSI Project: Towards Future-Proof Society - Adaptive Social Protection Against Climate Change
In 2024, we will continue our collaboration with various partners on the KONEKSI research grant. Our collaborators include Charles Darwin University, Habitat for Humanity Indonesia, The Prakarsa Indonesia, Universitas Kristen Wira Wacana, and the Institute of Resource Governance and Social Change (IRGSC). This consortium research project aims to explore the potential use of a more extensive social protection system beyond the state-centric ASP mechanism, incorporating community-based informal risk-sharing arrangements and other alternative protection measures against climate impacts
- The Australia-Indonesia Health Security Partnership (AIHSP)
In 2024 we will support the Australia-Indonesia Health Security Partnership (AIHSP), in which we will research gender mainstreaming in AIHSP government partners across five provinces: DI Yogyakarta, Central Java, Bali, South Sulawesi, and East Nusa Tenggara. Gender equality, disability, and social inclusion (GEDSI) are integral aspects of health security and primary health care, making them crucial for governments to be familiar with. Further, through this project, we hope to support AIHSP and government partners in mainstreaming gender considerations and knowledge across the health sector.
As we bid farewell to the closing chapters of 2023, we're optimistic about the impact of our ongoing projects on research and communities in Indonesia, Southeast Asia, and beyond. Our commitment to development and resilience remains steadfast. In 2024, we eagerly anticipate expanding our collaborative efforts with the government, CSOs, think tanks and the private sector to enhance sustainability globally. Here's to a year of innovation, growth, and impactful collaborations. Happy New Year! Hoping your year-end break is restful and filled with joy, with best wishes for a shining 2024.
Dr. Elisabeth Rianawati