Buletin Pemikir Negara Edisi ke-2, 2018


Buletin Pemikir Negara ini merupakan edisi kedua selepas edisi pertama dilancarkan pada Jun tahun lepas.

Buletin pada kali ini memaparkan aktiviti dan program yang dianjurkan MPN bermula pertengahan tahun 2017 sehingga awal tahun 2018 dengan kerjasama pelbagai pihak.

Pada masa sama, buletin ini menjadi platfom kepada ahli MPN untuk mengetengahkan isu-isu strategik negara untuk dikongsikan kepada semua.


Part 2 : University Funding – The

Experience of Autonomous Public

Universities in Indonesia

By: Prof. Dr. Jamal Othman

Traditionally, operational

budget allocated by the

government for public

universities is based on the

size of enrolment, field of study,

geographical location and special

affirmative policy. Such budget

aims to top up revenue from

student sources (tuition and fees).

In line with the national affirmative

policy goals, there is also a ruling

which ensures that the proportion

of non-fee paying poor students

to total enrolment in public

universities is set at a minimum of


The sources of revenue in private

institutions are rather limited, and

in almost all cases student fees

are the primary source of revenue.

However, since private institutions

in Indonesia contributes an

overwhelming 70% of the student

enrolment, in recent years they

also enjoy government subsidies

in the form of partial support for

salary of academic staff, laboratory

facilities, fellowships and research


According to Indonesian law on

public finance, self-generated

revenue in public universities is

considered as State revenue. It

must be deposited to the State

coffers and can only be utilized

upon approval by the State. The

PTN-BLU universities are exempted

and given a certain extent of

autonomy in managing their

revenue, i.e. they can directly use

the fund without first keeping it

in the State Treasury. Moreover,

the autonomous universities or

PTN-BH, have greater privilege

and flexibility in using their selfgenerated


Autonomous universities are also

allowed to accumulate reserves;

whilst other public universities

must deposit any unutilized budget

back to the State Treasury at the

end of the fiscal year.

Principal Fellow,

Majlis Profesor Negara (MPN).

In recent years the proportion of

revenue sourced from students

at public universities is steadily

increasing, reducing the share of

government allocation at some

autonomous universities to less

than 20%. Such increases in fee

revenue triggered public outcry

which compelled the Government

to put a cap on the proportion of

budget acquired from students

not to exceed 30% in any public

university. However, flexibility is

given in setting tuition fees for

postgraduates and non-regular

programs. The latter is very

much similar to that practiced in

Malaysia. In addition, as part of

the affirmative policy set by the

State, autonomous universities

must develop mechanisms to

provide financial support for

the economically disadvantaged

students, particularly in the setting

of fee structure.

The level of fees instituted

to students in autonomous

universities is typically positively

discriminated based on household

income of the students. Elements

of cross-subsidies are a norm.

Students from wealthy families are

charged based on their maximum

willingness to pay to subsidize the

relatively poorer students who may

pay a partial fee or not paying any

fee at all.

The civil service status in

Indonesia likewise Malaysia limits

the human resources management

in public universities, since all

civil servants are under the

Government scheme administered

by the National Civil Service

Agency (Badan Kepegawaian

Negara (BKN)). Only the BKN

has the authority to recruit and

terminate a staff’s employment,

while inhibiting the mobility of

academic staffs across institutions.

Hence, the authority of the

university Rector in terms of

human resource management is

often confined to the submission

of recommendation to the

BKN including appointments of

professors. However, autonomous

universities have the flexibility

to hire directly academic staff

including professors based on

schemes comparable to that

of academics under the BKN

scheme. It is common statistics

to observe that some 30%

of university academic staffs

and employees are hired and

paid directly by the university.

Autonomous universities also have

the authority and flexibility in

managing lecturers, e.g. to enable

staff mobility across institutions

and horizontal recruitment (staff


Malaysia may want to learn

further from the experience of

Indonesia in light of the national

policy focus to reduce the

reliance of local universities on

Government budgetary support

while not compromising on the

quality of education provision

and on improving the visibility

of Malaysian universities in the

global scene. Especially for the

research-based universities, a

clear challenge is to see more

autonomy in university governance

along with greater flexibility in

human resource and financial

management. This entails a

complete review of the related

regulatory frameworks which

include the areas of governance,

finance, crowd funding (including

waqf), asset and facility

management, incentive systems

and human resource management.

To consider equitable access of

the various population groups, the

national policy affecting the fee

structure for the regular academic

programs would also need to be

reviewed. The experiences of

Indonesia have clearly shown

that university autonomy can be

successfully implemented both in

the governance and in the financial

aspect without making the quality

of education provision worse off.


Majlis Profesor Negara