New UK-Indonesian research consortium launches to tackle coronavirus and climate change

Monday, 24 August 2020

A new Anglo-Indonesian alliance has been established to share research and expertise in a bid to build global resilience against pandemics, the climate emergency and natural hazards.

Within the next 25 years, the new UK-Indonesia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Sciences (UKICIS) aims to become a beacon for knowledge exchange and tech transfer between the two countries.

UKICIS will bring together the best of Indonesian academic talent at the Universities of Nottingham, Warwick and Coventry, together with those at Institut Teknologi Bandung, IPB University and Gadjah Mada University in Indonesia. These founding members are supported by the Indonesian Embassy in London, the British Embassy in Indonesia, and the Indonesian Ministry of Research and Technology/National Agency for Research and Innovation.

This pioneering development builds on a science and technology research and innovation partnership agreement that was signed between the UK and Indonesian governments on 5 August, 2020.

UKICIS will assist the implementation of that five-year agreement; and support research partnerships between the UK and Indonesia going forward. The consortium will also serve to develop and enhance Anglo-Indonesian educational, economic and cultural links through outreach activities and community engagement.

UKICIS aims to:

  • Deliver training, educational programmes and capacity building for higher education institutions and academics in both countries
  • Hold an annual UKICIS Workshop will bring together the brightest researchers from different backgrounds, generations, disciplines and sectors in order to explore potential for collaboration across academia, government, and industry
  • Promote associate activities between individual institutions
  • Prepare policy briefs for UK and Indonesian governments
  • Support academic/student exchanges between the UK and Indonesia
The British and Indonesian governments have shared goals and are committed to collaborate in providing solutions to future pandemic and reducing carbon print. The consortium is a concerted effort by UK and Indonesian universities towards fulfilling the goals of the MoU, by catalysing research collaboration and knowledge exchange between the two countries on these subjects.
Dr Bagus Muljadi, Assistant Professor in Chemical and Environmental Engineering at the University of Nottingham has been appointed UKICIS Coordinator.

Driven by the imminent problems raised by the Covid-19 crisis, the founding members will initially work together on the issue of global resilience against pandemics before broadening this to climate change and natural disasters.

Dr Muljadi adds, “Resilience will be explored from varied and interdisciplinary angles by UKICIS members. This includes food and how we can ensure there is sufficient, accessible supplies for all in the wake of unforeseen disasters. Our researchers will examine the mental health implications of, and public health preparedness for, the kinds of crises we are now witnessing.

“Other research projects will focus on the capabilities of man-made structures, data systems, energy supplies or transport networks to withstand hazards. We will also shine a light on business recovery strategies in the wake of financial crises and policy resilience when challenged by societal and economic change associated with shocks.”

Coventry University is working on multiple projects to help businesses and societies recover from the impact of the coronavirus crisis, and we welcome this opportunity to combine our expertise, with those of our partners in the UK and Indonesia, to help combat common challenges on an international scale and help build a resilient future for both countries. Our research within the Sustainable Production and Consumption cluster, in the Centre for Business in Society, adopts a multi-disciplinary approach and is framed by the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. By working together and sharing our expertise with our partners in the UKICIS within this sector, we aim to tackle global sustainability challenges in business and to support the overall agenda across the world.
Professor Benny Tjahjano, Co-Lead of the Sustainable Production and Consumption cluster within Coventry University’s Centre for Business in Society

Professor Guy Daly, Coventry University Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education and Students) said, “Coventry University is delighted to be joining this new UK-Indonesia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Sciences.  Coventry has been working with Indonesian University partners and academics as well as Indonesian government departments and officials for the last few years and developed great relationships, not least in research in social relations, health, engineering and business.  The consortium between the three UK Midlands universities of Coventry, Nottingham and Warwick, and partners at Gadjah Mada University, IPB University and Institut Teknologi Bandung, brings together an exciting mix of institutions and individuals well placed to provide real world answers and insights from interdisciplinary perspectives to some of the major societal challenges that we face.”

Dr Irwanda Laory, Associate Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Warwick, said: “The University of Warwick has been collaborating with Indonesian partners including universities and government institutions for many years. This includes research projects funded by Newton Fund and European commission as well as a dual degree MSc programme in Tunnelling and Underground Space. At the moment, Warwick is leading a major €1 million project in Humanitarian Engineering which involves Indonesian academic partners. We are also in the process of establishing a doctoral training programme, working together with Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture to provide scholarships for Indonesian students to study at Warwick. The inaugural meeting of the UK-Indonesia Consortium for Interdisciplinary Sciences (UKICIS) is a start to a series of collaborative actions and programmes by all partners in the consortium as we work together globally to address global challenges.”

Professor Christine Ennew, Provost of the University of Warwick, added: “Global challenges such as food security, the climate emergency, and disease pandemics can only be properly addressed through true international collaboration – different countries and institutions pooling their expertise, their resources, and their unique local knowledge. 

“The UK-Indonesia research consortium will serve to further connect our two countries in this way, establishing a research and educational network that will seek to tackle widespread social and scientific issues, from urban rehousing and women’s empowerment to energy and protecting crops.

“Warwick welcomes hundreds of students from Southeast Asia to its campus every year, and we’ve hosted events such as the Warwick Indonesia Forum, the Indonesian Scholars International Convention, and the Overseas Indonesian Students’ Association Alliance International Symposium, in the last few years.

“I am proud that Warwick is now building on its strong existing links by co-founding this new consortium, alongside our partners across Indonesia and the UK.”

UKICIS’s inaugural meeting of founding partners - and joint declaration ceremony – organised by the Indonesian Embassy for the UK was held on Friday 21 August 2020, which coincides with the 75th anniversary of the independence of the Republic of Indonesia. The declaration outlines a future Memorandum of Agreement between all founding organisations to take forward UK-Indonesia collaborations in research and education.

The launch of UKICIS is timely. Firstly, it shows the diaspora of Indonesian scientists’ contribution to working together in finding innovative solutions to address the global challenge of Covid-19 pandemic. Secondly, UKICIS will serve as a platform for Indonesian and UK scientists and researchers to enhance their collaboration in supporting the MoU on Research and Innovation Partnership between Indonesia-UK, signed on 5 August 2020. Thirdly, it aims to bridge communication between university and community through public outreach programs. The launch of UKICIS on the Anniversary of Indonesia’s Independence day was a truly lovely gesture.
Adam M. Tugio, Charge d’affaires, Indonesian Embassy in London

While Dr Bagus Muljadi chaired the meeting, participants were:

Professor Bambang Brodjonegoro, Minister of Research and Technology/National Agency for Research and Innovation, Republic of Indonesia

Amanda Solloway MP, Minister for Science, Research and Innovation, the UK Government

Mr Adam Tugio, Deputy Chief of Mission of the Republic of Indonesia and Charge d’affaires, Indonesian Embassy

Mr Robert Fenn, Deputy Head of Mission to Indonesia and Timor-Leste

Professor Ir. Nizam, Acting Director General of Higher Education, Ministry of Education and Culture of the Republic of Indonesia

Professor Arif Satria, Rector, IPB University, Indonesia

Professor Christine Ennew, Provost of the University of Warwick

Professor Guy Daly, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education and Students), Coventry University

Professor Panut Mulyono, Rector, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Indonesia

Professor Reini Wirahadikusumah, Rector, Institut Teknologi Bandung

Professor Robert Mokaya, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement, University of Nottingham

A live stream video was broadcast by the Indonesian Embassy in London on the day.

For information on joining up to the UKICIS consortium, contact Dr Bagus Muljadi on

Story credits

Coventry University/Centre for Business in Society (CBiS)

Coventry University is a dynamic, global institution with a tradition of teaching excellence, impactful research and bold international partnerships. Described in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019 as “one of the most innovative modern universities, bold with its vision of what the 21st century student experience should be”, the university’s approach to higher education developments has been central to its success.

The Centre for Business in Society (CBiS) is the home for specialist researchers within the Faculty of Business and Law. Through understanding the impact of organisations’ activities, behaviours and policies, CBiS’s research seeks to promote responsibility and to change behaviours so as to achieve better outcomes for economies and societies.

The University of Warwick

The University of Warwick is one of the world’s leading research institutions, ranked in the UK’s top 10 and world top 60 universities. Since its foundation in 1965 Warwick has established a reputation of scientific excellence, through the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine (which includes WMG and the Warwick Medical School). A global university, Warwick was named in the top 20 of the Times Higher Education’s Most International University rankings and 10 subjects in the QS World University Rankings by subject. Each year Warwick welcomes hundreds of students from Southeast Asia onto its campus, and in the last few years the University has hosted events such as the Warwick Indonesia Forum, the Indonesian Scholars International Convention, and the Overseas Indonesian Students’ Association Alliance International Symposium (ISIC-SI).

Emma Lowry final
Emma Lowry - Media Relations Manager Engineering
Phone: 0115 846 7156
Location: University Park

Notes to editors:

About the University of Nottingham

Ranked 32 in Europe and 16th in the UK by the QS World University Rankings: Europe 2024, the University of Nottingham is a founding member of the Russell Group of research-intensive universities. Studying at the University of Nottingham is a life-changing experience, and we pride ourselves on unlocking the potential of our students. We have a pioneering spirit, expressed in the vision of our founder Sir Jesse Boot, which has seen us lead the way in establishing campuses in China and Malaysia - part of a globally connected network of education, research and industrial engagement.

Nottingham was crowned Sports University of the Year by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024 – the third time it has been given the honour since 2018 – and by the Daily Mail University Guide 2024.

The university is among the best universities in the UK for the strength of our research, positioned seventh for research power in the UK according to REF 2021. The birthplace of discoveries such as MRI and ibuprofen, our innovations transform lives and tackle global problems such as sustainable food supplies, ending modern slavery, developing greener transport, and reducing reliance on fossil fuels.

The university is a major employer and industry partner - locally and globally - and our graduates are the second most targeted by the UK's top employers, according to The Graduate Market in 2022 report by High Fliers Research.

We lead the Universities for Nottingham initiative, in partnership with Nottingham Trent University, a pioneering collaboration between the city’s two world-class institutions to improve levels of prosperity, opportunity, sustainability, health and wellbeing for residents in the city and region we are proud to call home.

More news…

Media Relations - External Relations

The University of Nottingham
YANG Fujia Building
Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 5798