About the Speakers
● Mr Ben Bland, Director, Southeast Asia Program, Lowy Institute
● Dr Yanuar Nugroho, Visiting Senior Fellow, ISEAS - Yusof Ishak Institute
About the Webinar
Joko “Jokowi” Widodo surged to the top of Indonesian politics on a high hope for change in the country. Six years into his presidency, the former furniture maker is facing his biggest test as leader of a country with the largest Muslim population in the world amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The crisis has adversely affected some of his flagship development programs, including the new capital and various other big infrastructure projects. Observers wonder if Jokowi would be bolder in delivering the reforms that Indonesia desperately needs, as the current crisis might open a rare opportunity. Yet, despite promising to build Indonesia into an Asian powerhouse, Jokowi's development policy seems to lack a coherent framework.
This webinar will discuss findings from in-depth research on the personality and leadership style of Jokowi. The speakers will share their analysis of various contradictions embodied in the President’s governance of his administration, especially in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis and pressure from the conservative groups. We will discuss some of the fundamental contradictions of modern Indonesia. And how Jokowi has been struggling to balance between democracy and authoritarianism, openness and protectionism, Islam and pluralism. Understanding Jokowi’s leadership style can help us understand more about the greatest challenges in modern Indonesia.