29 July 2010

The Bakrie Chair for Southeast Asian Studies...

This is a real interesting piece of news for me. It is interesting because it is one of those head shakers. The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace has announced that it has accepted Bakrie money through the Bakrie Center Foundation to create a Chair of Southeast Asian Studies in Washington DC. The Chair is for a yet to be recruited Senior Associate. Applications are open at the moment if anyone is interested in being part of this. Check out the Carnegie Endowment website.

Seeing this is my blog, and my blog is about opinion, then I am going to offer one. Throwing money at the establishment of a new chair at the Carnegie Endowment does not absolve one of the sins of the past. The reality that the Bakrie family and the Bakrie family companies, and by default the Bakrie Center face is that the good people of Sidoarjo are still yet to be properly compensated for their losses and the harm that they have suffered as a result of the mud extrusion caused by unsafe and illegal drilling practices of a Bakrie family company.

I have no problem with the creation of the chair. It is a positive move that will allow for dedicated research to be done. But, as I said, this does not make right the wrongs done to others.

According to Anindya Novyan Bakrie, head of the Bakrie Foundation and CEO of Bakrie Telecom:

Working out of the world-class Carnegie Endowment, the Bakrie chair will contribute policy relevant research by revealing key political, economic, and socio-cultural trends in Indonesia and Southeast Asia. The senior associate will address the unanswered questions of the region and become a reference point for policy makers in the United States and the international community.”

You can read all of the speech at the Carnegie Endowment site.

NOTES (these are the notes attached to the press release)

The Bakrie Center Foundation (BCF) is led directly by Anindya Novyan Bakrie and the third generation of the Bakrie family. Its primary objective is to provide Indonesia’s best and brightest with a chance to study for a higher education at some of the best universities at home and abroad. It is a private sector initiative to identify and develop leaders in Indonesia, creating a talent pool that will eventually drive economic development and growth. 

The BCF is an integral part of the established Yayasan Bakrie Untuk Negri (BUN) in philosophy and values. Initiatives complement and expand the work of BUN which has pioneered several philanthropic and educational efforts in Indonesia, including the establishment of Bakrie University, a full-fledged undergraduate institution. All its efforts go back to the deep-rooted conviction of its founding father and enduring mission of the Bakrie Group: to give back to society and build a more prosperous Indonesia.

The Carnegie Asia Program in Beijing and Washington provides clear and precise analysis to policy makers on the complex economic, security, and political developments in the Asia-Pacific region.

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