Through a generous gift of the Robert Lemelson Foundation, the Indonesian Studies Program, under the auspices of the UCLA International Institute and the Center for Southeast Asian Studies, has been able to award a sixth set of fellowships to support research in Indonesian Studies.

Mayumi Ajioka
Department of Applied Linguistics

Pre-utterance Discourse Markers in Conversations Between Indonesian Native Speakers

My research topic on Indonesian is native speakers’ use of pre-utterance discourse markers from language learning and instruction. Pre-utterance discourse markers partly function as a linguistic device for time management strategy in conversation, which native speakers almost unconsciously use in order to organize their talk or narrative and to search the most appropriate words or phrases to express themselves, while holding the conversation floor. Pre-utterance discourse markers are for the most part outside the textbook and formal language instruction. They are closely related to native-like speech or native-like fluency, and will provide a clue to improve non-native learners’ speaking proficiency. The description of them requires collecting and analyzing the native speakers’ conversation as natural and as intact as possible. As an essential phase of this research, and also for the purpose of improving my Indonesian languages skills, I am planning to stay in Surabaya and some other places in Indonesia. Dr. Lemelson’s generous fellowship gives me a great opportunity to communicate directly with native speakers in Bahasa Indonesia in the very target culture where it is spoken, and to collect audio and/or visual conversation data based on the cooperation with native speakers there.


Dimitar Anguelov
Department of Geography

The Financialization of Urban Transformations: The Case of Jakarta, Indonesia

My research examines the role of finance in the construction of large-scale development projects, which are transforming the urban and peri-urban morphology of Jakarta. In Jakarta, massive financial and natural resources are being mobilized for the production of integrated “townships” or “mega-projects” that have taken advantage of Indonesia’s economic boom, rising consumerism, and resource abundance. Much of this recent growth is fueled by speculative finance, seeking ever-greater returns from investments in Jakarta’s overheated real-estate market. I will examine how these financialization processes, articulating with the profit-maximizing strategies of developers, shape the formation of such developments. Specifically, I want to explore the mechanisms enabling the financialization of urban and peri-urban land in Jakarta as well as the local conditions that make possible the investment strategies of trans-national conglomerates. Beyond unearthing the financial and political-economic ecologies (re)producing “mega”-developments, I will examine their broader effects on the built and natural environments, and on the urban livelihood strategies of marginalized and underprivileged populations, which are often displaced by such projects.


Kaylene Holvenstot
Department of Anthropology

Children's Health and Communication

Spanning the subfields of both medical and linguistic anthropology, my research seeks to investigate the role of communication as children learn to embody community and family attitudes of health and wellbeing, and the ramifications of health-promoting communicative practices for pediatric healthcare in Yogyakarta. Family health ideologies and practices can be seen as deeply linked to communication in everyday family life, and children represent an especially rich avenue for exploring this: As they learn to negotiate their bodies in ways that promote health, they are also learning to regulate their emotions in morally tenable ways. Children become health-conscious and embody local and family views of health in the course of becoming “proper” members of communities. Seen in this way, everyday interactions and communicative processes that transpire early in life are key in shaping experiences of and stances toward health and wellbeing into adulthood, with implications for preventive medical care. Indonesia has a history of tying everyday interaction to local attitudes surrounding health, although much of the literature on the subject is not contemporary. This research will indicate the currency of previously articulated views of children’s health in the region today, documenting everyday health-related communication about and with children. To get at the issues underlying health and wellbeing for children in the family context, in addition to their implications for pediatric healthcare, this research attends to both the everyday interactions of families with children and to the ways those families interface with pediatricians and healthcare providers in the clinical setting.


Sean Kennedy
Department of Urban Planning

The Politics of Ecosystem Services Valuation: Analyzing Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) through the Lens of Environmental Justice

Economic valuation of ecosystem services is increasingly viewed as a pragmatic tool to communicate the value of an ecosystem in a language that reflects dominant political and economic views (Gómez-Baggethun and Ruiz-Pérez 2011). Payment for environmental services (PES) programs – such as payments to smallholders to plant trees to improve local watershed function and larger-scale efforts to reduce deforestation as a means of generating tradable credits for sequestered carbon – utilize economic valuation of the environment to compensate land users who adopt land-use practices that yield marketable ecosystem services. In recent years, PES has attracted considerable attention as a means of using market mechanisms to simultaneously achieve environmental and pro-poor objectives.
My research seeks to understand the politics of ecosystem services valuation through an analysis of three PES projects implemented by the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) on the Indonesian island of Sumatra - Sumberjaya, Muara Bungo, and Singkara. In this preliminary investigation, I hope to gain an understanding of the political processes through which the ecosystem services in each case have been valued using a combination of interviews with key informants, on-the-ground observation and analysis of government and NGO reports. Particular attention will be paid to the ways ecosystem services are valued, by whom they are valued, and in what ways influence external economic and social factors inform these valuations. One of the major implications of this project will be to highlight the contested nature of ecosystem values, and the ways that broader economic and social changes affect payment for ecosystem services stakeholders in different ways. By highlighting the politics of ecosystem services valuation, this project seeks to understand the distributional impacts of PES program development and implementation, and allow for the consideration of social and environmental justice issues in future market-based conservation or restoration efforts.


W. Tyler McCraney
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Can Cooperation be a Key Innovation? Shrimp-Goby Coevolution in Indonesia

Snapping shrimps form symbiotic relationships with goby fishes throughout the tropics. The shrimp provides a home for the goby in its burrow, and the goby provides tactile alerts of approaching danger to the shrimp. These symbiotic shrimp-goby communities are remarkable because there are many different species that look almost identical, especially in Indonesia, where at least 60 species of goby interact with 20 species of shrimp. There are four to nine times more species of symbiotic gobies than free-living gobies, suggesting that the cooperative partnership has been evolutionarily advantageous. Furthermore, evolutionarily similar shrimps are associated with evolutionarily similar gobies, hinting that shrimp-goby communities are evolving together. My research will investigate whether shrimp-goby communities are evolving together, evolving faster than free-living relatives, and forming new species by shifting to cooperate with new species. The Lemelson Fellowship is providing me with an opportunity to travel around Indonesia to collect shrimp-goby specimens in their natural environments. I will use genome analysis to construct evolutionary trees, and associations will be estimated between shrimp and goby trees to determine if they are evolving together. Evolutionary rates will be compared among closely related symbiotic and free-living species, and shifting species will be evaluated by examining biogeography of closely related species that are symbiotic with different partners.


Joseph Perman
Department of Community Health Sciences

The Measurement of Post-Disaster Reconstruction in Aceh, Indonesia

My dissertation examines Indonesia's post-disaster experience following the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Specifically, it seeks to understand and disentangle its reconstruction process, and the factors that enabled success in the wake of vast devastation. Indonesia's socio-political landscape and experience with decentralization contributed greatly to its efforts, but there are significant lessons that can be gleaned and applied globally. Post-disaster reconstruction is a complex and monumental task, and there is a critical need for its assessment and measurement due to the significant number of parties involved and potential funding at stake. It is my aim to measure the extent and rate of reconstruction in Banda Aceh, Indonesia, as well as identify what factors may explain this change. The lack of a single rubric or system of measurement for reconstruction, along with incomplete or conflicting data, make such a task difficult. However, by utilizing and creating indicators with which to measure change, I hope to establish a standardized framework for reconstruction in any post-disaster scenario. My work will include the analysis of satellite imagery, reports/data from participating institutional actors, field observation, and key informant interviews with those involved with the process. The generous support of the Lemelson Fellowship will enable my fieldwork, providing a necessary local contribution to my research.


Mark Phuong Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Evolvability in Indonesian Cone Snails

Indonesia is the global center of marine biodiversity. To understand how this impressive diversity came to be, I study factors that may have shaped the evolution of biodiversity over millions of years. One factor is evolvability, or lineage’s intrinsic capacity to adapt and diversify – some organisms have a greater propensity to readily change and adapt in response to local environmental conditions. As a Lemelson fellow, I will be examining the impact of evolvability on the evolution of biodiversity using cone snails within the exceptionally diverse genus Conus (> 7600 species). These carnivorous snails specialize on either worms, molluscs, or fish by injecting their prey with venom. I am studying this group because the genes that encode their venom can be used to characterize differences in evolvability between groups of cone snails. Results from this study will document how evolvability may promote or constrain the evolution of biodiversity in Indonesia. Through this project, I will be working closely with the Indonesian Biodiversity Research Center in Denpasar, Bali, to provide research opportunities for Indonesian students and assist with biodiversity education.


Yu Tanaka
Department of Linguistics

Nasality Spreading and Implosivization in Indonesian

This study investigates phonological phenomena called nasality spreading and implosivization in the Indonesian language through fieldwork in Indonesia. Indonesian is reported to have nasality spreading: when a word has a nasal sound such as m, n and ng, other sounds in the word get nasalized. The first goal of the study is to give a detailed description of the pattern of nasality spreading, investigating in what direction and to what degree nasality spreads. Additionally, I have found that some Indonesian speakers realize the sound b in some phonological context as an implosive stop, which involves lowering of the glottis during an oral and glottal closure and inward air movement at the time of release. The second goal of the study is to describe the context in which implosivization occurs. I plan to conduct fieldwork research in Indonesia. I am going to record native Indonesian speakers using equipment that can measure the airflow and air pressure from the mouth and nose. The equipment will allow me to obtain quantitative data to identify nasalized sounds and implosives. A Lemelson fellowship will greatly help develop and conduct this research project in Indonesia, which contributes to the understanding of the Indonesian language.


Anne White
Department of Sociology

Doctor-Patient Interaction in the Medical Tourism Setting

Medical tourism is a rapidly growing billion-dollar industry, and in the past ten years, Asia has been on the forefront of this industry. Indonesia hopes to benefit from this lucrative market, joining the ranks of neighboring countries that already have established facilities that draw patients from around the world seeking expert medical care at discounted rates. In 2012, Bali opened the doors to its first facility targeting medical tourists, offering services such as dialysis treatment, surgical and non-surgical cosmetic procedures, and dental care. The draw of medical tourism for patients from the US or Australia or other countries with expensive healthcare and/or long waiting periods for elective surgeries is that they can receive timely, quality healthcare while recuperating in a beachfront hotel for the same price, if not less, than treatment would cost in their home country. Thus, medical tourism epitomizes the ongoing shift from people being patients to medical consumers. Much research has been conducted on the rise of medical tourism, the impact on healthcare in its host country, quality of medical coverage, and the ethics of “first world health care at third world prices” (Turner 2007).
I plan on traveling to Bali to study this institution from an interactionist’s perspective. I am curious how the relationship and interactions between patients and doctors unfold in this setting. How similar or different are their interactions in comparison to non-medical tourism visits? The goal of my research is two-fold – to add an interactionist’s perspective to the ongoing research about medical tourism, and secondly, to have a comparison of how Western patients behave in their local environment (a surgical center in Texas is my other dissertation fieldshite) when seeking medical help versus a foreign location. I will use both the methods of Conversation Analysis (CA) and ethnography for my research.

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Published: Thursday, July 3, 2014