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€1m University of Gloucestershire-led Indonesia Growth Hub project reaches half-way point

€1m University of Gloucestershire-led Indonesia Growth Hub project reaches half-way point

The University of Gloucestershire has reached the half-way point of a €1m Erasmus*-funded project being led by its School of Business and Technology to help develop entrepreneurial talent in Indonesia.

The ‘Growing Indonesia – a Triangular Approach’ (GITA) project is creating a series of ‘Growth Hubs,’ initially in seven Indonesian universities. The initiative is modelled on the University of Gloucestershire’s own Growth Hub, a physical space where students, academics, graduates and other enterprises come together to share ideas.

Project head, Professor Neil Towers, and Project Manager, Nadine Sulkowski, from the University of Gloucestershire recently travelled to the Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education (MoRTHE) in Jakarta to participate in a public discussion focused on GITA’s progress and attended by over 100 representatives of Indonesian universities.

Professor Towers explained: “GITA has had a significant impact in its’ 18 months of operation. Our seven Indonesian partners have embedded entrepreneurship education into various university subjects and are developing new teaching systems inspired by the University of Gloucestershire.

“Indonesia has a severe problem retaining its graduates, resulting in a severe economic impact on the nation. With a population of 260 million it is Southeast Asia’s largest economy, but there is a lack of support for start-ups and an over reliance on foreign labour markets.

“In comparison Gloucestershire is widely recognised as an affluent part of the UK with world-leading employers and expertise, particularly in high performance engineering and cyber technology.

“Despite this, we face similar challenges to Indonesia and struggle to attract young people to enter local growth industries and make a choice to live, work and develop their skills in the County. Part of our mission is to strengthen educational opportunities and support local economic growth.”

GITA Project Manager, Nadine Sulkowski, added:

“GITA’s international impact is a credit to Gloucestershire’s entrepreneurial strengths. In addition to creating Growth Hubs across Indonesia, we are helping implement business engagement strategies and supporting the creation of a ‘National Association for Entrepreneurial Universities.’

“The project will run until October 2020 and I’m pleased we were able to visit Jakarta and discuss GITA’s progress with other lead participants, including MoRTHE’s Professor Ismunandar, Director General of Learning and Student Affairs; Professor Rina Indiastuti, Secretary of the Directorate General of Learning and Student Affairs, and Mr Bima Laga, Associate Vice President of Public Policy and Government Relations at Indonesia’s e-commerce giant, Bukalapak.”