UQ and Indonesia

Asia-Pacific partners

After more than 50 years of close collaboration, UQ is one of the most engaged international universities with Indonesia, and has close ties with the University of Indonesia and the Indonesian Institute of Sciences. Through our research synergies – particularly food and water security, energy and resource management, and governance – UQ and Indonesia are creating a healthier, happier, and more sustainable future.

Fast facts


Indonesian students enrolled at UQ


Indonesia-UQ co-publications


academic staff born in Indonesia


research project collaborations


alumni in Indonesia


agreements with 19 official partners

Fast facts show full-year 2020 data.



UQ has partnered with Indonesia-based researchers on 382 co-publications in the past 5 years. The top research areas include Environmental Sciences, Ecology, and Materials Science. Our top co-publishers are Institute Technology of Bandung, Indonesian Institute of Sciences, and University of Indonesia.

Research collaborations

In the past 5 years, UQ has collaborated with 4 institutions on 4 research projects. Key collaborators include Bogor Agricultural University, Universitas Indonesia, and Universitas Hasanuddin.

Research funding

One Indonesian organisation, World Wildlife Fund, Indonesia, has worked on two research projects in the past 5 years (ongoing research with no new funding). 

Collaboration in action

Research by Facebook into hate speech

UQ researchers, University of Sydney and Facebook are working together on a 12-month project to devise policy that manages online harmful content and hate speech in the Asia-Pacific region. The study will look at how well Facebook’s policies and procedures are able to identify and regulate this type of content. Facebook has done this in Europe, but this is the first such venture in the Asia Pacific. The project will expand on work already conducted at UQ by Dr Kirril Shields and Asia Pacific Centre for the Responsibility to Protect on the legal regulation of hate speech and incitement in Asia. The Sydney team will map hate networks on sample Facebook pages in India, the Philippines, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Australia.

Bringing green gold to Indonesian lands

Indonesian small-hold farmers have seen their livestock suffer from low productivity because of poor nutrition and prolonged dry seasons. UQ researchers have found that Fodder tree legumes (FTL), like Leucaena leucocephala, provide high protein feed even during long periods of drought. Centre for Crop Science A/Professor Max Shelton and team – experts from the Assessment Institutes for Agricultural Technology, University of Mataram and CSIRO – worked with 2000+ farmers, who planted one million FTL seedlings. The $1.78m project trained 60 Government staff and 80 farmers, and distributed 2000kg of improved leucaena fodder tree seed grown and sold by Indonesian smallholders. Government agencies across Eastern Indonesia have now adopted this practice.

An ore-some forest

Researchers at UQ's Sustainable Mineral Institute (SMI) Centre for Mined Land Rehabilitation are working with nickel hyperaccumulator plants in Halmahera Island, Indonesia. Hyperaccumulator plants are able to accumulate four per cent nickel in their leaves, translating to over 300kg of nickel per hectare per year in harvested biomass. Farming metal crops and harvesting their metal-rich biomass is called ‘agromining’, enabling access to resources, like nickel or cobalt, needed for lithium-ion batteries and other high-tech demands. Research at the Centre has led to the discovery of 120 hyperaccumulator plants new to science. These unusual plants could also assist in the rehabilitation of polluted land.



Managing banana diseases in the centre of origin

Bananas evolved in Indonesia and provide food security with over 7 million tonnes produced annually. An expert on tropical plant diseases, Professor André Drenth, is collaborating with several Indonesian partners to improve the detection, identification and management of the banana blood disease. The disease, named after the red-brown discolouration when the fruit is cut, has spread across the Indonesian Archipelago and to peninsular Malaysia. The Australian Plant Biosecurity Science Foundation funds the research. The Indonesian Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education awarded Professor Drenth a ‘World Class Professorship’ in 2017 while the Crawford Fund awarded him an International Engagement Award in 2019.

Improving food security in beef and cattle sector

UQ researchers from School of Agricultural and Food Sciences (SAFS) have partnered with academics at Bogor Agricultural Institute and the University of Mataram in Indonesia, along with Deakin University, to undertake a development project on ‘Digital Technology Options for Indonesia's and Australia's Beef and Cattle Sector’. The Indonesia-Australia Partnership on Food Security in the Red Meat and Cattle Sector funded the project to identify and raise industry awareness of electronic technologies with the potential to improve the efficiency and profitability of the beef industries in both countries. The project builds on the technology audit methodology developed by SAFS Prof Kim Bryceson and involved interviews and surveys of people involved in the sector in both Australia and Indonesia. 

Modern humans and Homo erectus did not co-exist

UQ researchers Dr Michael Westaway and Professor Jian-xin Zhao together with lead author Associate Professor Kira Westaway from Macquarie University helped to establish the age and a new chronology for a critical geological site in central Java for understanding the later stages of human evolution. The international study, published in Nature was led by the Institute of Technology, Indonesia; Macquarie University; and University of Iowa. The study resulted in 52 new ages, indicating the Ngandong river deposit and fossils were laid down between 117-108,000 years ago. A/Prof Kira Westaway said that “By clarifying the age range and putting it into the context of the changing fossil record and new DNA research, it is possible to arrive at an entirely new position of understanding in human evolution.”

Celebrating Indonesian culture


Our students can study Indonesian through the School of Languages and Cultures, which offers approximately 15 Indonesian language courses. Students study the country’s history, politics, cultures and society while developing spoken and written languages skills from a wide range of authentic, contemporary sources. 

The Institute of Modern Languages (IML) at UQ also offers Indonesian courses for the wider community.

Video: What to expect while studying Indonesian at UQ, and where graduates can go.

Student mobility

Support for in-country learning

UQ is a founding member of the Australian Consortium for In-Country Indonesian Studies (ACICIS), a non-profit consortium of universities that develops and coordinates study options in Indonesia for Australian students. More than 35 UQ students have completed ACICIS programs in Indonesia since 1997 in the fields of business, Indonesian language, and development studies.

Mobility Program

The New Colombo Plan (NCP) Mobility Program supports undergraduates to undertake study, internships, and mentorships in Indo-Pacific countries, including in Indonesia. In the most recent NCP round, Bachelor of Journalism students spent two weeks in Jakarta reporting on the 2017 government elections. Along with basic language training, the students gained hands-on experience in the use of technical equipment, and editorial, ethical, legal, and intercultural communication issues.

UQ and the University of Indonesia

UQ has a long-standing partnership with the University of Indonesia (UI). In 2015, UQ and UI celebrated 15 years of a joint psychology program. In this time, more than 200 Indonesian students have completed their Bachelors degree at UQ, with many UI students staying on for postgraduate programs. In 2017, UQ's Faculty of Business, Economics and Law also celebrated a major milestone with UI: 10 years of student exchange, in which more than 200 dual degree students have entered into UQ bachelors of Business Management, Commerce, and Economics.

Anti-corruption field trip

In February 2017, the TC Beirne School of Law took 15 Bachelor of Laws students on a two-week trip to study Indonesia’s efforts at fighting corruption. Exploring issues of integrity and corporate governance, the students mixed academic study with field-based learning.


Indonesia is home to a large UQ alumni network - UQ has 2494 alumni living in Indonesia. Alumni with significant links to Indonesia include:

Research Professor in Microbiology, Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) and member of the Indonesian Academy of Sciences; 2014 UQ International Alumnus of the Year (PhD 1989)
STEM-based Innovation, Food Business Management @IPMI International Business School, Jakarta; former Director of the Centre for Sustainable Aquaculture and Pathology Studies at Surya University; and, Research Scientist at Harvard Medical School; 2012 winner of the UNESCO-L'Oreal Women in Science Award (Master of Marine Biology 2005)
Vice Minister of Environmental and Forestry at Ministry of Environmental and Forestry, Republic of Indonesia (PhD 2016). 2021 Australia Awards Indonesia alumnus of the Year.