President Joko Widodo appointed a new cabinet on 27 July, adding nine new faces. Burhanuddin Muhtadi writes that the reshuffle was a pragmatic move aimed at consolidating his now broad ruling coalition and providing him with greater freedom to implement his priority programs. He might appear to be playing it safe, Burhanuddin says, but this strategy is not without risks.

The past month has seen rising tensions in the South China Sea. What are the implications of recent developments for Indonesia, and how can it best respond? Will Indonesia’s relations with China be affected? Dr Dave McRae speaks to Dr Makmur Keliat, from the University of Indonesia, about these issues and more in the latest Talking Indonesia podcast.

Jokowi was produced by a decentralised democratic system in which negotiation, including with oligarchs, was necessary for advancement. But now that he is president, he finds that he has nothing to bargain with except his personal popularity. As Professor Vedi Hadiz writes, negotiating with oligarchy may end up eroding the popularity Jokowi needs to negotiate with them in the first place.

In January, President Joko Widodo twice instructed senior officials to resolve past violations of human rights by the end of the year. Yati Andriyani and Nurkholis Hidayat write that unless major changes are made to the reconciliation process, prospects for meaningful resolution do not look good.

Indonesian diplomats have been encouraged to promote the country’s exports and attract more foreign investment. But as Awidya Santikajaya writes, unless trade liberalisation is also part of the discussion, their efforts will not come to much.

The thick haze choking much of Sumatra and Kalimantan and the recent murder of environmental activist Salim Kancil have come to define the environmental record of President Joko Widodo’s administration. Josi Khatarina looks back at a year of disappointing progress.

President Joko Widodo came to power one year ago with promises to combat impunity for past human rights violations, safeguard freedom of religion and improve welfare in Papua. Has the president met any of these pledges? Former LBH Jakarta director Nurkholis Hidayat takes a look at Jokowi’s human rights record.

Next Tuesday will mark one year since President Joko Widodo assumed office. What have we learned about him as a leader during his first year in power? Dr Dave McRae explores this issue and more with PhD candidate Wawan Mas’udi in Talking Indonesia.

Wednesday will mark 50 years since the events that triggered the brutal repression of the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) and its alleged sympathisers. Ken Setiawan writes that while political elites appear to be able to stomach the idea of reconciliation, an apology is far more contested.

President Joko Widodo is often portrayed as more inward looking than his predecessor, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. This would seem to be reflected in the Indonesian approach toward ASEAN under Jokowi. But as Dr Avery Poole argues, the reality is more complex.

After granting clemency to five Papuans in May, Jokowi’s efforts to release more political prisoners have met with little success. Assistant Professor Daniel Pascoe explains the difference between amnesty and clemency, and how neither option looks like it will allow Jokowi to deliver on his promise. Photo by Øystein Solvang/NHD

Papuan support for dialogue remains strong and widespread, writes Dr Richard Chauvel in this second part of a three-part series on recent developments in Papua. Photo by Jaringan Damai Papua.