What can we possibly learn from a crisis? The 1997/98 Asian monetary crisis triggered political changes, improvements in governance, and developments
in the social protection system in Indonesia. Following a series of crises due to major increases in world food and fuel prices in 2005, Indonesia now
has to deal with the 2008/09 global financial crisis. Even though the Indonesian economy seems resilient and is still recording positive growth, it was
inevitable that the crisis would slow down the rate of growth. Behind the optimism over the resilience of the Indonesian economy, there are many pressing
questions: Why is the Indonesian economy still growing positively in the midst of the global crisis? Which sectors are affected by the crisis and which
are not? What impacts are felt by communities and who suffers the most? Is the current social protection system adequate? All these points lead to
queries for the short term: What is needed to minimize the negative impacts of the crisis on community welfare? How can recovery be accelerated? A query
of a more long-term nature is: What is needed to strengthen the Indonesian economy and to reduce the vulnerability of the people against external shocks?
In an effort to find the answer, The SMERU Research Institute-with support from AusAID, IDS, and Bappenas-is carrying out a series of studies involving
monitoring national and local mass media, analyzing secondary data, and monitoring the conditions of communities that are potentially affected by the
crisis, both in the form of regular visits and in-depth case studies.
The results of the studies will be presented as:
Fact sheets: Brief descriptions of findings based on community-level monitoring, or the summary of media monitoring and secondary data analysis;
Monitoring updates: Three monthly summary of the development of the global crisis as observed from media monitoring, secondary data analysis, and
Policy briefs: Discussion of various important issues arising out of the crisis impact monitoring activities and relevant policy recommendations; and
Research report: Full report of all monitoring activities.