Indonesia’s Forests to Benefit from New MOU

Indonesia’s forests are set to benefit from a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed today between two leading research organizations in Indonesia

19 April, 2004

Under the renewed MOU, the Indonesian Government’s Institute of Sciences (LIPI) and the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) will work together on a number of initiatives to improve research into Indonesia’s forests and those who depend on forests for their livelihoods.

The Center for International Forestry Research is a non profit, international science institute supported by the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research. It was established in response to global concerns expressed at the 1992 Rio Earth Summit about the social, environmental, and economic consequences of forest loss. Through its headquarters in Indonesia and its projects in some 30 countries, CIFOR’s research contributes to the sustained management of forests and well being of people in the tropics around the world.

LIPI is the Government of Indonesia’s official research institute, set up by the Government in 1967 and charged with the responsibility of implementing and overseeing the Government’s objectives in the areas of scientific and technological research. LIPI’s mission is to use scientific and technological research based on humanistic principles to promote and advance a society that is just, educated, creative, united and dynamic.

Director General of CIFOR, David Kaimowitz, said that the MOU signed today was an expression of the common vision shred by CIFOR and LIPI.

"CIFOR and LIPI are two very complementary organizations. Through close collaboration, their research can make a significant contribution to the future of Indonesia’s forests," Kaimowitz said. The MOU provides for a steering committee with representatives from FORDA, LIPI and CIFOR. This arrangement ensures that the partnerships benefits from the participation of the government forestry agency.

"Today’s MOU will consolidate this collaboration and optimize the research efforts of both LIPI and CIFOR. CIFOR is proud to work with LIPI, an institute that is highly regarded for the quality and broad range of scientific research. LIPI’s diversity of knowledge and research, and its high level of scientific expertise, will be of considerable benefit to CIFOR’s forest research," Kaimowitz said.

Prof. Dr. Umar A. Jenie, the Chair of LIPI, said the MOU would not only benefit both organizations but, more importantly, also benefit the forests and people of Indonesia.

"LIPI and Indonesia can gain a lot from CIFOR’s expertise in researching forest issues. In particular, LIPI will benefit from CIFOR’s international expertise. For example, CIFOR’s research places like Cameroon and Brazil is often applicable to what is happening in Indonesia’s forests.

"I am confident this knowledge will make a significant contribution to LIPI’s own research into forest and environmental issues. For example, as a global research organization, CIFOR will be able to help make the rest of the world more aware of the important work LIPI is doing " Prof Dr. Umar said.

"Also, the MOU will ensure forest research is more strategic and help avoid duplication of research areas. It will also see us cooperating in accessing the scarce international funds available for forest research. Most importantly, CIFOR and LIPI will develop a synergy that brings together international and local knowledge and expertise to make a significant contribution to our understanding of Indonesia’s forests," Prof Dr. Umar said.

Many of the problems facing Indonesia’s forests are not unique. Similarly, many of the technologies that work successfully in Indonesia’s forests can also be applied to forested regions in other tropical countries. The MOU between CIFOR and LIPI will help ensure that forest research undertaken by both organizations becomes a global good that benefits forests and people around the world.

One of the new elements in the revised MOU is the creation of a project committee to manage, monitor and evaluate effective project implementation. In addition to LIPI and CIFOR, the committee will include the Ministry of Forestry’s "Forestry Research and Development Agency" (FORDA).

  1. sharing research results and recommendations
  2. developing joint project proposals
  3. sharing library and information resources
  4. facilitating the exchange of scientists