Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads by Jamie Davidson (review)

Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads by Jamie Davidson (review) Contemporary Southeast Asia Vol. 37, No. 3 (2015), pp. 492–94 DOI: 10.1355/cs37-3j © 2015 ISEAS–Yusof Ishak Institute ISSN 0129-797X print / ISSN 1793-284X electronic Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads. By Jamie Davidson. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015. Hardcover: 292pp. When Joko Widodo, aka Jokowi, announced that he would run for president of Indonesia in 2013, he not only promised to weed out corruption and increase transparency, but also that he would pursue a new style of leadership altogether. Focusing on the plight of the masses, Jokowi pledged that he would no longer be beholden to Indonesia’s entrenched political interests. He also promised a “mental revolution” and set ambitious targets should he win the presidency, including the construction of 5,000 kilometres of railways, 2,600 kilometres of roads, 1,000 kilometres of toll roads, 49 dams and 24 seaports. Foreign academics and analysts were ecstatic. “What we’re seeing is extraordinary”, enthused Douglas Ramage, a consultant based in Jakarta, in a Wall Street Journal article on 9 October 2013, entitled, “In Indonesia, a New Breed of Politicians is on the Rise”. Providing an assessment of Widodo’s campaign, Ramage went on to say that the “compelling logic of popularity is what http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic Affairs Institute of Southeast Asian Studies

Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads by Jamie Davidson (review)

Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads by Jamie Davidson (review)


Contemporary Southeast Asia Vol. 37, No. 3 (2015), pp. 492–94 DOI: 10.1355/cs37-3j © 2015 ISEAS–Yusof Ishak Institute ISSN 0129-797X print / ISSN 1793-284X electronic Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads. By Jamie Davidson. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015. Hardcover: 292pp. When Joko Widodo, aka Jokowi, announced that he would run for president of Indonesia in 2013, he not only promised to weed out corruption and increase transparency, but also that he would pursue a new style of leadership altogether. Focusing on the plight of the masses, Jokowi pledged that he would no longer be beholden to Indonesia’s entrenched political interests. He also promised a “mental revolution” and set ambitious targets should he win the presidency, including the construction of 5,000 kilometres of railways, 2,600 kilometres of roads, 1,000 kilometres of toll roads, 49 dams and 24 seaports. Foreign academics and analysts were ecstatic. “What we’re seeing is extraordinary”, enthused Douglas Ramage, a consultant based in Jakarta, in a Wall Street Journal article on 9 October 2013, entitled, “In Indonesia, a New Breed of Politicians is on the Rise”. Providing an assessment of Widodo’s campaign, Ramage went on to say that the “compelling logic of popularity is what drives Indonesian politics now, and the perception of a candidate as clean, transparent and authentic is what most drives popularity”. Other scholars were equally optimistic about Jokowi’s capacity to tackle Indonesia’s myriad pressing problems. Probably carried away by campaign dynamics, several foreign academics donned t-shirts with Jokowi’s portrait, and gushed in op-eds and blogs about how the former mayor of the city of Solo, through sheer intelligence and imagination, had single-handedly cut through red...
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Institute of Southeast Asian Studies
Copyright
Copyright © The Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
ISSN
1793-284X
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Abstract

Contemporary Southeast Asia Vol. 37, No. 3 (2015), pp. 492–94 DOI: 10.1355/cs37-3j © 2015 ISEAS–Yusof Ishak Institute ISSN 0129-797X print / ISSN 1793-284X electronic Indonesia’s Changing Political Economy: Governing the Roads. By Jamie Davidson. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015. Hardcover: 292pp. When Joko Widodo, aka Jokowi, announced that he would run for president of Indonesia in 2013, he not only promised to weed out corruption and increase transparency, but also that he would pursue a new style of leadership altogether. Focusing on the plight of the masses, Jokowi pledged that he would no longer be beholden to Indonesia’s entrenched political interests. He also promised a “mental revolution” and set ambitious targets should he win the presidency, including the construction of 5,000 kilometres of railways, 2,600 kilometres of roads, 1,000 kilometres of toll roads, 49 dams and 24 seaports. Foreign academics and analysts were ecstatic. “What we’re seeing is extraordinary”, enthused Douglas Ramage, a consultant based in Jakarta, in a Wall Street Journal article on 9 October 2013, entitled, “In Indonesia, a New Breed of Politicians is on the Rise”. Providing an assessment of Widodo’s campaign, Ramage went on to say that the “compelling logic of popularity is what

Journal

Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International and Strategic AffairsInstitute of Southeast Asian Studies

Published: Jan 31, 2015

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