Jakarta. Out of 4455 higher education institutions in Indonesia, more than 3200 are private and many of them are not run effectively, which is why the Ministry of Research, Technology and Education is urging them to merge.
According to higher education institutional development director at the ministry, Totok Prasetyo, many a private educational institutions do not function well, have a disproportionate ratio of students to lecturers or dubious systems that let people too easily obtain academic titles.
"If some institutions have no students, why don't they merge? The number of the institutions can also be reduced. An example of a good merge is the Yogyakarta Technological University (UTY), which is currently flourishing," Totok told reporters after delivering a speech on "The Role of Higher Education Accreditation for the Quality of Education in Indonesia" at Atmajaya University, South Jakarta, on Monday (13/02).
Totok said that if private higher education institutions, which are often owned by foundations, are established upon a noble cause rather than a commercial purpose, they would agree to merge and cooperate with others.
"If their aim is the improvement of higher education in Indonesia, they would act to deliver better services," Totok added.
The merging scheme was proposed because many institutions are not effective in providing decent education, which becomes ironic since despite the huge number of the institutions, to many Indonesians access to higher education is very limited.
"The ministry and the National Accreditation Body for Higher Education [BAN-PT] are still determining the ideal number of particular types of higher education institutions and where they are needed," Totok said.
Indonesia has six types of higher education institutions: universities, institutes, specialized colleges, polytechnics, academies and community colleges. Each of them has their own target market.