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Minister of Communication, and Informatics
Ladies and Gentlemen
Assalamu’alaikum Wr. Wb. Good morning.
Peace be upon you with Allah’s mercy and blessing
May God bless us all. Amen.
First of all, I would like to give my highest appreciation to the Rectors of Universitas Negeri Jakarta, Universitas Terbuka, Universitas Pendidikan Ganesha, Universitas Mahendradata and Head of Kopertis Wilayah VIII and their team for holding this big important event for not only education, but also, in my perspective, communication. Since the day I came, I notice that the committee has worked hard and done their best in holding this grand event and warmly welcoming all of us.
It is my honor to deliver the keynote speech opening the first day of this prestigious Educational Technology World Conference (ETWC) 2016 in Bali. I believe this is the first world conference in educational techonology field of study that is held in Indonesia. This conference is very significant not only for the field of education in general, but more importantly also for the educational technology as well as communication. In a few days starting from now, I believe the discussion among scholars in this conference will result in a fruitful constructive breakthrough that our nation needs, especially in building not only the students’ characters, but more importantly also the character building of our nation.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Communication, educational technology and informatics, I argue, are three interrelated terms that should go hand in hand that are not only beneficial for the study, planning, application, production of communications media for instruction, but more significantly they also contribute in the acceleration of production base, especially in human sector, in this case the education.
The Ministry of Communication and Informatics that I lead coordinated 22 delegates representing Indonesia for the Asia Pacific Information and Communication Technology Awards (APICTA) in 2015. From seventeen competition categories, Indonesian delegates, some of them were students, succeeded in bringing seven awards for the categories of school project, tertiary student project, communication/startup, inclusion, research and development, application tools and platform, and e-learning. This achievement made me realise that the synergy between the fields of communication and informatics and education cannot be separated. They should work together, fulfill one another, strengthen each other, so that the synergy of these can become the national investment and asset. This investment involves high-tech and high quality of human resource. The one that can provide this is high quality education. The collaboration between high-tech and high quality of education will create creative, emphatic and tenacious entrepreneur, skillful and competent human resource.
As our nation is not a homogeneous society, the challenge lies in uniting the differences of cultures, languages, dispersion, religions, ethnics and customs in this archipleago. Beside that, having more than 17,000 islands which stand on the ring of fire, situated in one of the longest coastal lines in the world, flanked by pacific and Indian oceans become another great challenge for Indonesia. Securing our seas and oceans from pouching has currently become national issue as many fishermen from our neighbouring countries were caught doing this crime. The information about tsunami, tidal wave, earthquake and volcanic eruptions disperse virally thanks to media.
With these challenges, Ladies and Gentlemen, I would argue that communication and education are the key to safeguard and preserve Indonesian pluralism or is known as Bhinneka Tunggal Ika (Unity in Diversity or Diversity in Unity). One of the attempts in doing this, the Ministry has also launched Palapa Ring program that connects all the regencies and cities in Indonesia with broadband so that communicating real-time information is no longer an expensive, exclusive thing.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Another important aspect that we need to ponder is that demographically speaking, Indonesia is a big, potential market. Although some say that the consumption of Indonesian society supports the economic growth of this state, I believe that we can be creative about it. For the example, the moment of eid-id-fitr which just recently passed – the moment when many of us shopped (hopefully not shop til you dropped) for celebrating our victory in competing our own passion, lust and appetite during Ramadhan – cannot be seen merely as the moment when the consumption rate reaches its peak. Using social media as a tool to communicate, I found that many housewives, for example, became extremely creative in generating money for the family income. They used social media applications, such as instagram, youtube, whatsapp, line, facebook and many others in promoting foods, handicrafts and other merchandises they make. Traditional direct selling is no longer seen as the only effective communicative medium. This, I argue, involves communication technology as well as education. This simple case exemplifies that the form of selling and marketing which can probably or potentially be seen as the impetus of UKM (Usaha Kecil Menengah) or micro-medium scales enterprise. The ministry has launched “go digital” program for UKM in order to empower them by providing one up to two million hosting. And I think education and/or educational technology may play its important role in this.
Finally, I would like to thank all of you and hope that the results of the conference will be fruitful and beneficial not only to the presenters, participants, or the committee, but more importantly to our great nation.
I wish you all have a nice, pleasant and valuable conference.
Wassalammu’alaikum warohmatullohi wa barokatuh.
Bali, 1 August 2016
The Minister of Communication and Informatics of Republic of Indonesia