In 2008 an Indonesian economist, Sudarno Sumarto, was chosen to become the second Shorenstein APARC/Asia Foundation Visiting Fellow. He will be in residence at Stanford during the 2009-2010 academic year.
An edited summary of Dr. Sumarto's proposed research and writing at Stanford follows:
Facing the major damage wreaked by the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98 on already poor and/or vulnerable Indonesians, the government in Jakarta was forced to launch a series of emergency social safety nets. These programs targeted multiple sectors: employment, education, health, food security, and community empowerment.
Now that a decade has gone by since these measures were undertaken, it is time to draw policy lessons from the experience. Special attention will be paid in this project to the dynamics of the process of deciding and delivering social protection, the difficulty of enlisting or creating appropriate targeting and implementation mechanisms, institutional enablers and impediments, the role of civil society, the impact of commodity subsidy reforms, and the relevance of good (and bad) governance.
The study will also draw comparisons between Indonesia's record of targeted social protection and the experiences of other developing countries.
Dr. Sumarto heads the SMERU Research Institute (Jakarta). He also lectures at the Bandung Institute of Technology, Universitas Nusa Bangsa (Bogor), and the University of Indonesia (Jakarta).
Dr. Sumarto has contributed to more than sixty co-authored articles, chapters, reports, and working papers, including "Agricultural Growth and Poverty Reduction in Indonesia," in Beyond Food Production (2007); "Reducing Unemployment in Indonesia," SMERU Working Paper, 2007; and "Improving Student Performance in Public Primary Schools in Developing Countries: Evidence from Indonesia," Education Economics, December 2006.
Dr. Sumarto has spoken on poverty and development issues in Australia, Chile, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Japan, Morocco, Thailand, and the United Kingdom, among other countries. He has a PhD and an MA from Vanderbilt University and a BSc Cum Laude from Satya Wacana Christian University (Salatiga), all in economics. He and his wife Wiwik Widowati have three children.