Indonesia's wealth of natural capital is an asset for creating resilient and dignified livelihoods for the Indonesian people. Nevertheless, Indonesia’s vast archipelago, the multi-centric governance authority, and the many competing interests for Indonesia's natural resources are only a few of the complexities that make the reality seem farther than these ideals.
What we believe is still missing from our collective attention to realize this potential is to invest in Indonesia's natural resources practitioners to equip them with the ability to initiate and lead change in the face of complexity. To move a complex system, a leader must have the capacity to convene and align the many interests of its stakeholders and together uncover the more fundamental roots of their challenges. Through these, trust and authentic collaboration for a common future can emerge.
BEKAL Pemimpin, launched in July 2019, is shaped as a leadership capacity building program that aims to answer this need. Its cohort of participants is carefully curated to assemble a "microcosm" that replicates the complexity of Indonesia's natural resource management. Therefore, the fifty-eight participants who comprise the first cohort represent 19 provinces and the various sectors with direct influence on Indonesia's natural capital. They work in equally diverse fields: terrestrial, maritime, coastal, cross-cutting issues—such as governance and legislation—and fields that we feel can offer innovative solutions to our challenges, such as ecotourism or tech-based startups. This microcosm then becomes a holistic training ground where participants hone their leadership capacity to address complexity through their interactions with one another—in a controlled environment and equipped with various tools to transform together. This microcosm also provides a very rich source of learning, giving participants access to the many perspectives, paradigms and practices that shape the complex landscape of Indonesia's natural resource management.
BEKAL Pemimpin's fellows were also invited and challenged to exercise and actualize these leadership capacity to address real challenges of natural resources management. Nine prototypes are borne out of this authentic calling to transform their realities, supported by their peer as consultants and coaches, who convene out of their authentic callings. These prototypes are not only the next training ground for BEKAL leaders, but also a laboratory to generate solutions together with the other system actors, transcending sectoral and institutional boundaries.
This interim report is prepared to tell the story of their learning journey. We also wish to present BEKAL prototypes as an alternative narrative of participatory cross-sector natural resource management, guided by the principles of equitability, sustainability, and local wisdom. Above all, BEKAL Pemimpin hopes to be a ray of hope and inspiration that a better future is fully within reach through the Gotong Royong values that have shaped the lives of our nation for generations.
This interim report is prepared to tell the story of the fellows’ learning journey. Throughout the document, aquamarine-colored pages mark deeper dives into certain aspects of the program, which you may want to skim lightly before getting back to the main storyline. You will also find the “Theoretical Framework” text boxes that explain in smaller bits why we did what we did. We hope you enjoy taking this journey with us through this report. In the upcoming final report, we will highlight what the program has achieved to catalyze systemic changes towards a more equitable, sustainable, and locally rooted natural resource management.