Indonesian agroforestry organizations form partnership with World Agroforestry Centre
Three key organizations in Indonesia working in agroforestry have joined with the World Agroforestry Centre to further their mutual agenda, says M. Siaruddin
A collaborative agreement was signed on 7 May 2014 by four institutes working in agroforestry in Indonesia: the Indonesian Society of Agroforestry (known in Indonesian as Masyarakat Agroforestri Indonesia/MAFI), National Centre for Agroforestry (Balai Penelitian Teknologi Agroforestry/BPTA), Indonesian Network for Agroforestry Education (INAFE) and the World Agroforestry Centre.
The four institutes were represented by Ir Encep Rachman MSc, secretary general of MAFI; Ir Harry Budi Santoso MP, Head of BPTA; Dr Mahrus Aryadi, chair of INAFE; and Dr Ujjwal Pradhan, regional coordinator of the World Agroforestry Centre Southeast Asia.
The collaborative agreement expressed the intent of the four institutes to strengthen cooperation in enhancing agroforestry research, education and development in Indonesia that is in accordance with the Government’s forestry development policies and the national agroforestry research strategy.
In his speech, Ir Harry Budi Santoso, who serves as the chair of MAFI, stated that the collaborative agreement was initiated by MAFI and was enthusiastically embraced by the other three institutes. The signing of the agreement is a landmark in agroforestry research and education because it is signed by the four main players in the realm of agroforestry in Indonesia. Thus, any agroforestry-related events that were formerly carried out separately by each institute can now be synergized.
On a similar note, Dr Ujjwal Pradhan stressed the need for a collaborative approach in enhancing and developing agroforestry at every level, starting with farmers, households and communities all the way to the landscape level.
‘No single institution can fulfil all expectations’, he said.
Dr Pradhan also articulated the importance of ensuring that the commitment to collaborate goes beyond the ceremonial process but really has an impact ‘on the ground’ through various activities.
In his speech, Dr Mahrus Aryadi expressed the view that the signing of the agreement by the four institutes will certainly strengthen agroforestry in Indonesia because each institute is representing a particular function with specific objectives. The World Agroforestry Centre and BPTA represent non-governmental and governmental institutes working in agroforestry research while INAFE is an agroforestry education network and MAFI represents civil society and provides a general forum.
Dr Margaret Kroma, deputy director general of the World Agroforestry Centre for partnership and impact, was present to witness the signing ceremony. She appreciated the collaborative agreement that is in line with the Centre’s policy to work with national institutes.
‘The Centre has produced many research outputs and technology and the next challenge is to make sure the outputs can reach, and applied by, their intended users’, she said. ‘Collaboration with various institutes can help disseminate our research outputs to wider audiences’.
The first event that will be jointly held by the four institutes is the 2014 National Agroforestry Week. The event will comprise many smaller events, such as photo, writing and drawing competitions, and culminate in a seminar and technology exhibition. The technical detail of this event is currently being discussed by the four institutes. It is envisaged the event will occur in early November.
Note: M. Siaruddin is a staff member of BPTA and a member of the Communication and Publication division of MAFI.