Category: Analysis

What accounts for the sympathetic and supportive Indonesian response Rohingya asylum seekers received on their arrival in Aceh in May, and how have they fared since? Dr Dave McRae explores these issues and more with Dr Antje Missbach in the final Talking Indonesia podcast for 2015.

Indonesian voters will head to the ballot box on Wednesday to elect governors and mayors in nine provinces and 260 districts. Dr Dave McRae and Diane Zhang take a close look at past election results to examine the extent to which incumbency provides candidates with an edge.

Infertility is a major problem in Indonesia and this is reflected in the rapidly growing numbers of Indonesians presenting to infertility clinics. But as Dr Linda Rae Bennett writes, doctors’ assumptions about sexual morality are having a significant impact on the quality of care women experience.

Many analyses of women’s involvement in fundamentalist groups depict these women as naive victims of more powerful or charismatic men. But as Lies Marcoes explains, young women have distinct political and ideological motives for participating in violent extremist movements. Photo by Armin Hari.

On 9 December, about half of Indonesia will return to the polls to elect 260 district leaders and nine governors. How important are these local elections? And will recent reforms aimed at improving their quality be effective? Dr Dave McRae explores these issues with Titi Anggraini, director of the Association for Elections and Democracy (Perludem).

Papuan independence leader Filep Karma was released from prison last Thursday, after serving more than 10 years behind bars for treason. Does his release indicate a commitment by the government to resolve the conflict in the province, and how will it affect efforts to promote dialogue? Dr Richard Chauvel reports.

The release of a police circular on the management of hate speech has sparked fears in some quarters of a return to the restrictions on freedom of expression seen under the New Order. But as Irfan Abubakar writes, if implemented as intended, it could help to prevent religious conflict.

Late last month, Aceh began enforcing its Shari’a Criminal Code, the Qanun Jinayat. Why are legislators so obsessed with regulating sex? And does the code make it an offence to be gay or lesbian in the province, as many media outlets have suggested? Hendri Yulius takes a close look at the Qanun Jinayat.

What mental health issues does Indonesia face, and are the drivers similar to other countries? What treatment options are available, and does stigma affect access to treatment? Dr Dave McRae explores these issues with Dr Diana Setiyawati, the director of the Centre for Public Mental Health at Gadjah Mada University, in the latest Talking Indonesia podcast.

More than a decade has passed since Indonesia passed legislation on elimination of violence against women in the home. But as Dina Afrianty writes, most women still prefer to escape abusive marriages through divorce, rather than pursue charges against their husbands.

2015 has been a stellar year for Indonesian cinema, with more than a dozen films competing at international festivals. Dr Gaston Soehadi writes that this success has been achieved in the almost complete absence of government support.

Bogor Mayor Bima Arya Sugiarto rose to power in 2014 with pledges to eradicate corruption in the civil service, restore order to the city and improve waste management. But as Lies Marcoes writes, over recent months his name has become synonymous with religious intolerance.