Necessity as a Force for Change: Refuting Reform Optimists and Reform Skeptics of Contemporary Indonesia

Contradecir a los optimistas de la reforma y a los escépticos reformistas de la Indonesia contemporánea

Jonathan Chen, Leonard C. Sebastian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article seeks to situate the current political polity of post-reformasi Indonesia by arguing against reform optimists and reform skeptics. It argues that necessity had given rise to widespread reforms within Indonesia. However, as a “politics-as-usual” atmosphere re-dominated the political landscape, the pace of reform was not as qualitatively comprehensive, its scope and variety decreased. Nonetheless, earlier necessity-driven reforms had set in place the bulwark of immutable change within Indonesia’s political landscape that makes recentralization, or rather a reversion to New Order authoritarianism quite impractical.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-26
Number of pages18
JournalRevista UNISCI
Issue number50
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2019


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