Indonesia Inquiry

Political Parties in Indonesia (Annotated Bibliography)

November 2, 2014 Annotated Bibliographies Data Research Resources 0

Political Parties in Indonesia (Annotated Bibliography)

Compiled by: Regina Salinas

Directed Individual Study, Fall 2014

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

Abdussalam, Andi. 2014. Antara News. “Indonesian Political Parties Kick Off Nationwide Campaigns.” May 16. http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/93224/indonesian-political-parties-kick-off-nationwide-campaigns (September 28, 2014).

A total of 12 Indonesian political parties at the national level kicked off a 21-day nationwide campaigns on Sunday to win the votes of 158.8 million voters in the April 9, 2014 legislative elections. On Saturday, leaders of the 12 political parties fielding candidates in the 2014 legislative elections declared their commitment to maintaining the security and integrity of the campaigns, to be carried out March 16 to April 5, 2014.

Allen, Nathan. 2014. “From Patronage Machine to Partisan Melee: Subnational Corruption and the Evolution of the Indonesian Party System.” Pacific Affairs 87 (June): 221-245.

The party system in Indonesia has expanded in the post-Suharto era. With each successive election, voters have spread their support across a wider array of parties. This has occurred despite deliberate institutional tweaks designed to consolidate the system by privileging large parties. Why has the party system expanded despite increasing institutional incentives to consolidate? This article places party system change in a broader context of decentralization and corruption. The decentralization and deconcentration of political power has opened multiple avenues for voters and elites to access state resources. Whereas major parties were expected to dominate resources in the immediate aftermath of the transition, changes to the formal and informal institutions eroded their control over the state. This has caused previously consolidated subnational party systems to fracture. The argument is demonstrated using narrative and newly constructed cross-district datasets. The paper develops the concept of rent opportunities, defined as the ability to access and abuse state resources. Party system expansion has been greatest in areas with high rent opportunities, where both voters and elites are particularly motivated by the competition for state resources. In these areas, characterized by large state sectors, the formerly authoritarian party (Golkar) initially won large electoral victories due, in part, to its control over patronage. As Golkar lost its ability to monopolize resources, the party system fractured. Voting for small parties surged and the party machine was replaced by a partisan melee. My argument exposes the limits of institutional engineering and underlines the formative role corruption has had on the evolution of Indonesia’s party system.

Bachelard, Michael. 2014. Sydney Morning Herald. “SBY Vows to Challenge New Threat to Local Democracy in Indonesia.” September 26. http://www.smh.com.au/world/sby-vows-to-challenge-new-threat-to-local-democracy-in-indonesia-20140926-10mbk0.html (September 28, 2014).

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has announced he will challenge a new law that restricts local democracy in Indonesia, even though his own party was largely responsible for its passage. Supporters say the passage of this law is good for democracy and political parties because, at the moment, “good people are not willing to join political parties because they are turned off by the bad image” of electoral politics.

Cochrane, Joe. 2014. The New York Times. “Political Upstarts Work to Propel Change in an Indonesia Tired of Corruption.” June 21. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/22/world/asia/political-upstarts-work-to-propel-change-in-an-indonesia-tired-of-corruption.html?_r=0 (September 28, 2014).

Analysts say the early successes of this new political group, especially in attracting accolades in the national press, might eventually loosen the grip on power by the Suharto-era politicians-a group that includes the outgoing president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a retired Army general; former President Megawati Sukarnoputri, the daughter of founding President Sukarno; and Aburizal Bakrie, who leads the Golkar Party, Mr. Suharto’s political vehicle during his 32-year rule.

Dirwan, Ahmad. 2012. “Analysis of Organization Behavior of Member from Political Party in Indonesia.” OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development 5 (October): 101-108.

The purposed of this study was to analyze the behavior of political organization in Indonesia. Recently, political elites and member of political parties simply moved the other party (leafhopper). This behavior made political party become weak and difficult to build a democracy. As the study sample, would be taken from the secondary sources of election results in 2009 and the results of the 2012 election, for the first round of the Governor of Jakarta. The main consideration using this sampling, because Jakarta as the Capital of the State already became a barometer elections in Indonesia. From the results of data processing, founded the correlation coefficient to r = 0.393, which indicates the inconsistencies voters using their vote’s rights based on political party. From the above phenomena, variables to be analyzed from a political party organization behavior approach was: perceptions, values and ideology, organizational understanding, commitment, and personality. From the analysis, will be found why elite party members easily switch from one party to another. Further to this, according to research result, we would given recommendations based on a behavioral approach political organization in Indonesia, including how to strengthen the party’s ideology and increase members’ commitment.

Eklof, Stefan. 2004. “Parties and Political Culture in Twentieth-Century Indonesia.” In Power and Political Culture in Suharto’s Indonesia: The Indonesian Democratic Party and Decline of New Order, ed. Stefan Eklof. Copenhagen: NIAS Press, 23–43.

The chapter addresses parties in relation to political culture in twentieth-century Indonesia. Despite the little work that has been done on Indonesian political party research, the author hopes to shed some new light on Indonesian progression and overall knowledge of political parties.

Fionna, Ulla. 2011. “The Pull and Push between Central and Local Political Parties: A Case Study of Party Branch Organisation in Indonesia.” Asia Pacific Journal of Public Administration 33 (December): 143-162.

With the resignation of former president Suharto after thirty-two years of oppressive rule, political parties were granted freedom in their operations more than a decade ago, most notably through the lifting of bans on grassroots operations. At the same time, new policies of administrative and political decentralisation have influenced parties to empower their local branches. This combination of political freedom and decent ralisation has given parties the opportunity to establish active and functioning grassroots branches and the chance to get local communities to engage in politics. This article examines and compares the operational capacities of four different parties (Partai Golkar, Partai Demokrasi Indonesia Perjuangan, Portai Amanat Naeional, and Partai Keadilan Sejahtera) in their local branches in Malang, East Java. Focusing on the aspects of local administration and local-central relationship, the article demonstrates that although the parties have responded positively to their newfound freedom to operate locally, that same freedom has benefited parties with better local resources and better central support.

Hillman, Ben. 2012. “Ethnic Politics and Local Political Parties in Indonesia.” Asian Ethnicity 13 (September): 419-440. (September 28, 2014).

Since Indonesia’s return to multiparty democracy in 1999, national law makers have introduced regulations that effectively ban ethnic or regionally based political parties. A major exception to the rule can be found in the province of Aceh where ethnic separatists were granted the right to form their own political party to contest local elections in return for giving up their armed struggle for independence. In legislative elections held in 2009 the party of the former rebels – the Aceh Party – won a landslide victory. Drawing on in-depth interviews with national party leaders and parliamentarians, this article examines the implications of the rise of the Aceh Party for Indonesia’s political party system and the potential for ethnic-based parties to resolve ethnic conflict and secessionism in other parts of Indonesia, including in Papua where the failure of special autonomy arrangements has led to increased militancy among indigenous Papuans.

Honna, Jun. 2012, “Inside the Democrat Party: Power, Politics and Conflict in Indonesia’s Presidential Party.” South East Asia Research 20 (December 2012): 473-489.

This article examines the development of the Democrat Party (Partai Demokrat, PD), which won the 2009 legislative elections in Indonesia. PD has received little scrutiny from observers of Indonesian politics, largely because of a commonly shared view that the party is nothing but a political vehicle for Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, the country’s President since 2004. A closer look at the internal dynamics of PD, however, challenges this conventional view, reveals the diversity of political orientations and interests among party elites, and elucidates the emerging new patterns of party politics in the age of democracy. This article illustrates these internal dynamics and discusses the party’s prospects for the post-Yudhoyono era.

Johnson Tan, Paige. 2012. “Reining in the Reign of the Parties: Political Parties in Contemporary Indonesia.” Asian Journal of Political Science 20 (August): 154-179.

This article analyzes party system institutionalization during Indonesia’s transition to democracy since 1998. From 1999–2008, I assert, Indonesia has largely been under the reign of the parties. The parties were both strongly embedded in the legal framework of the new democratic system and weakly institutionalized, relying on charisma and platitudes instead of organizational depth, with party splits littering the landscape, thus creating a perfect storm of frustration on the part of many Indonesian people. Legal changes, court decisions, and the rise of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, however, have reined in the parties’ power perceptibly. Though these changes may increase individual accountability on the part of politicians, they are likely also to weaken the parties’ institutionalization as the emphasis goes from parties to individuals. This has long-term implications for Indonesia’s democratization.

Kapoor, Kanupriya and Randy Fabi. 2014. “In Indonesia, Moderate Islamic Party Returns to Political Centerstage.” May 11. http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/11/us-indonesia-election-idUSBREA4A02Q20140511 (September 28, 2014).

Indonesian presidential frontrunner Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has joined hands with the country’s most popular Islamic party, cementing the surprise resurgence of Muslim parties in this year’s election and possibly renewing their voice in the new government. The National Awakening Party (PKB) on Saturday became the latest party to back Jokowi’s Indonesian Democratic-Party of Struggle (PDI-P) and his bid for president on July 9.

Kikue, Hamayotsu. 2011. “The Political Rise of the Prosperous Justice Party in Post-Authoritarian Indonesia: Examining the Political Economy of Islamist Mobilization in a Muslim Democracy.” Asian Survey 51 (October): 971-992.

This article explains distinctive patterns of Islamist mobilization in Indonesia by focusing on the Prosperous Justice Party (PKS). It argues that the relatively solid party-mass relations and broad spatial penetration of PKS are conditioned by its organizational ability to deliver welfare services to strategically targeted constituencies to help construct a community base.

Margiono, Muhammad Ariono. 2014. Jakarta Post. “Putting the Public Back Into Political Party ‘Business Models’.” August 21. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2014/08/21/putting-public-back-political-party-business-models.html (September 28, 2014).

This phenomenon may be an opportunity to jump-start political party reform in Indonesia. With high public interest in donating to a political cause, there is an opportunity for political parties to invite their members and the public to directly take part in the process and collectively finance Indonesia’s democracy.

Maulana, Ardian, and Deni Khanafiah. 2009. “The Dynamics of Political Parties’ Coalition in Indonesia: The Evaluation of Political Party Elites’ Opinion.” (November): 1-11.

During the Indonesian president election process, the coalition of parties could be shown as the dominant process beside the president campaign. The coalition could be regarded as the emergence of the parties’ preferential coherence based upon the interest and attributes of each party. The similarity and difference of parties’ preference and attributes could be depicted through of party elites’ opinions and attitude toward flowered political issues. In this paper, we use the Heider’s balance theory to construct relation network among parties by using the longitudinal news data of the party elite’s opinion that published by the media, and then analyze the dynamic of coalition formation in the Indonesian political system during the election process. We have shown that the balance of the party’s relational network move toward the larger balance index relative to the initial condition. This phenomenon has verified the structural balance hypothesis especially for the conflict situation such as the election process. Interestingly, the balance of the system is fluctuated dynamically through time following certain trajectory. This dynamics is divided into 3 phases, that is, disorder state, conflict state, and order state, as well as signed the difference of party behavior before and after the legislative election. Moreover, we also analyzed the stability two parties’ relation in particular period in order to understand specifically the dynamic of the system in triadic level.

Otto, Ben and Sara Schonhardt. 2014.” The Wall Street Journal. Islamic Political Parties Make A Comeback in Indonesian Election.” April 10. http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303873604579493311138076926 (September 14, 2014).

Islamic parties reversed years of decline in Indonesia’s legislative elections, preliminary results suggest, putting themselves in a better position to make or break coalitions in the world’s most populous Muslim country.

Parlina, Ina. Jakarta Post. “Ahok Has ‘No Plans’ to Join Political Party.” September 23. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2014/09/23/ahok-has-no-plans-join-political-party.html (September 28, 2014).

Following his highly publicized exit from the Gerindra Party, Deputy Jakarta Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama claims to have no plans to engage in any political party any time soon. Despite his declaration, Ahok did not comment on the possibility of his rejoining Golkar in the future if the proposed abolishment of direct elections for regional leaders did not pass.

Parlina, Ina. 2013. Jakarta Post. “Political Parties Seize Control.” September 27. http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2014/09/27/political-parties-seize-control.html (September 28, 2014).

Political parties appeared to have secured a lock on regional administrations following the passage of the regional elections (Pilkada) law, which will vest Regional Legislative Councils (DPRDs) with the power to appoint local leaders.

Rich, Roland. 2011. “Designing the DPD: Indonesia’s Regional Representative Council.” Bulletin of Indonesian Economic Studies 47 (August): 263-273. (September 28, 2014).

This paper examines the design of the Regional Representative Council (DPD) that Indonesia set up in 2002. Why was it established with its current electoral system and responsibilities? The design of the DPD had to fit within a compromise made between the two then dominant parties and their leaders. The Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle wished to preserve the revered People’s Consultative Assembly structure, but without losing the power it then wielded by virtue of being the biggest party in the parliament. The other major party, Golkar, obtained the provincial chamber it sought, but was denied control of it when membership was closed to political parties. The public’s demand for greater electoral power was appeased through the method of election chosen for the DPD. Institutionally, the design has not made the workings of the legislature more complicated for the established political actors, because the new chamber has little influence.

Rodan, Garry. 2014. “Civil Society Activism and Political Parties in Malaysia: Differences over Local Representation.” Democratization 21 (August): 824-845.

Despite their importance to democratic consolidation, relationships between civil society activists and political parties have often been problematic following the downfall of authoritarian regimes. In challenging authoritarian rule in Malaysia, though, these forces have increased cooperation and jointly committed at the 2008 elections to local government reform. This was especially important for middle-class non-governmental organization (NGO) activists seeking a transformation in the political culture of parties. Moreover, state government victories by reformist Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalitions included Selangor and Penang where these NGOs are concentrated. Yet while local government reform followed, NGOs and parties placed differing emphases on elections, transcending ethnic-based representation, and checks and balances on local government power. Lacking substantial social and organizational bases, NGOs were outflanked by more powerful interests inside and outside PR parties, including those aligned with ethnic-based ideologies of representation and economic development models opposed by NGOs. NGO activists also advanced various democratic and technocratic rationales for local representation, indicating a complex ideological mix underlying their reform push. The study highlights interrelated structural and ideational factors likely to more generally constrain the capacity of middle-class NGOs to play a vanguard role in democratically transforming Malaysian political culture.

Romli, Lili. 2013. “Crescent and Electoral Strength: Islamic Party Portrait of Reform Era in Indonesia.” International Journal of Islamic Thought 4 (December): 11, 37-47.

The establishment of Islamic political parties in the reform era in Indonesia after the fall of Suharto (1998), considered as resurgence of political stream. There are several factors that led to the revival of Islamic parties after the New Order, the theological factor, historical, sociological, and reform factor. The presence of Islamic political parties after the New Order was apparently diverse and fragmented. In the political elite of Islam itself in establishing a political party based on Islam and there is also based on nationality, and in establishing political party was using substantially approach and there is also that use formalistic approach. In the reform era elections, political Islam has failed, in which Islamic parties do not receive optimal support from voters Islam. The failure of Islamic parties in election of reform era is caused of factor among Muslims has been change the orientation of political views. Islamic parties in the reform era stuck in a political myth quantity, and Islamic parties are also fragmented and fractured in to small forces.

Schonhardt, Sara. The Wall Street Journal. “Indonesia’s Political Parties Hurrying to Build Coalitions.” May 12. http://blogs.wsj.com/searealtime/2014/05/12/indonesias-political-parties-hurrying-to-build-coalitions/ (September 14, 2014).

Indonesia’s political parties are in a last dash to form alliances before the deadline to register a candidate in July’s presidential race arrives. The country’s elections commission – energized by sweet rice snacks and ginger tea – confirmed final results of last month’s legislative polls just 30 minutes before its midnight deadline on May 9. But while the results were largely as expected – at least according to initial “quick counts” on election night – some uncertainty remains over which parties will come together to back a candidate for president.

Sherlock, Stephen. 2012. “Made by Committee and Consensus: Parties and Policy in the Indonesian Parliament.” South East Asia Research 20 (December): 551-568.

The study of political parties in the parliamentary arena in Indonesia is in its infancy. This has led to various assumptions about the way parties act in the House of People’s Representatives (Dewan Perwakilan Rakyat, or DPR) that are based on scanty evidence and are heavily influenced by hostile attitudes to the DPR common in the media and the NGO community. The paper argues that, contrary to assertions that central party leaders exercise strict discipline over their members in parliament, coordination between party and caucuses, or fraksi, is weak, inconsistent and ad hoc. The paper concludes that this situation is facilitated by the eschewing of public votes through the process of decision making by ‘consensus’, a practice that is actually a vote by fraksi leaders to the exclusion of ordinary members.

Shin, Jae Hyeok. 2013. “Electoral System Choice and Parties in New Democracies: Lessons from the Philippines and Indonesia.” In Party Politics in Southeast Asia: Clientelism and Electoral Competition in Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines, eds. Dirk Tomsa and Andreas Ufen. New York: Routledge, 101–119.

This chapter aims to achieve two main objectives, in regards to Indonesia’s political parties. First to evaluate the utility of dominant analytical perspectives with regard to the party/electoral politics in explaining the rise and fall of religious parties, and, second, to introduce an alternative analytical perspective to fill the gaps left in the existing literature.

Simmons, Erica, and Dan Slater. 2013. “Coping by Colluding: Political Uncertainty and Promiscuous Powersharing in Indonesia and Bolivia.” Comparative Political Studies 46 (November): 1366-1393.

Democracy forces political elites to compete for power in elections, but it also often presses them to share power after the electoral dust has settled. At times these powersharing arrangements prove as encompassing as to make a mockery of putative partisan differences, and even to wipe out political opposition entirely by bringing every significant party into a “party cartel.” Such promiscuous powersharing arrangements undermine representation by loosening parties’ commitments to their core constituents, and threaten accountability by limiting voters’ capacity to remove parties from power via the ballot box. In the otherwise deeply disparate cases of Indonesia and Bolivia, the origins of promiscuous powersharing can be traced to similar periods of high political uncertainty surrounding crisis-wracked transitions to democracy. Party elites coped with the uncertainties of transition and crisis by sharing executive power across the country’s most salient political cleavages. These arrangements forged an elitist equilibrium grounded in informal norms and networks, allowing collusive democracy to outlast the uncertain crisis conditions in which it was forged. Yet they have ultimately proven self-undermining by triggering distinctive popular backlashes, returning both countries to the political uncertainty that promiscuous powersharing was initially intended to alleviate.

Slater, Dan. 2014. “Unbuilding Blocs.” Critical Asian Studies 46 (April): 287-315.

Political blocs and cleavages do not emerge and endure unless political parties construct and cultivate them. When Indonesia democratized in the late 1990s, it appeared that party competition would be characterized by two primary cleavages that had been incubated under Suharto’s “New Order”: a regime cleavage pitting reformist opponents of the fallen dictatorship against its holdovers, and a religious cleavage distinguishing parties by their views on the proper political role for Islam. Some fifteen years after Suharto’s departure, neither a reformist nor a religious bloc exists in Indonesian politics. This is not because reformist and religious themes lack resonance among voters, but because party elites have effectively abandoned cleavage politics by promiscuously sharing power in an all-encompassing party cartel. Party leaders have behaved as if they are more accountable to each other than to their presumptive support blocs, leaving reformist and religious social forces without reliable party champions in national politics. This article traces the origins of Indonesia’s “accountability deficit” to the elite deal making that accompanied the formation of the country’s first democratic governing coalitions in 1999 and 2001. By promiscuously sharing power across cleavage lines, party leaders fostered voter de-alignment in the 2004 and 2009 elections. This de-alignment has left Indonesian democracy vulnerable to the highly unpredictable politics of individuals rather than the more predictable politics of institutions as the 2014 elections approach, ominously opening the door to populist and anti-system challengers striving to rebuild the political blocs that party elites have recently unbuilt.

Suryadinata, Leo. 1982. Political Parties and the 1982 General Election in Indonesia. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.

In May 1982, the Suharto government held its third general election and Golkar again emerged as the victor after winning more than 64 percent of the votes. This book attempts to examine Indonesian political parties, their problems and prospects with the reference to the 1982 election.

Tanuwidjaja, Sunny. 2012. “PKS in post-Reformasi Indonesia.” South East Asia Research 20 (December): 533-549.

This article focuses on the moderation strategy of the Prosperous Justice Party (Partai Keadilan Sejahtera, PKS) and its impact on the Indonesian party system. It makes the argument that PKS’s moderation strategy is electorally challenging for both PKS and the Indonesian party system. PKS’s moderation strategy has forced it into a difficult competition with established major parties for median voters. PKS’s relative success is a product more of the poor performance of the existing Islamic parties than its moderation strategy. With PKS joining the catch-all party bandwagon, the Indonesian party system is now being shaped by dominant catch-all parties, and in the long run such a development will undermine the legitimacy of parties and will become detrimental to the process of democratic consolidation.

Tanuwidjaja, Sunny. 2010. “Political Islam and Islamic Parties in Indonesia: Critically Assessing the Evidence of Islam’s Political Decline.” Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International & Strategic Affairs (April): 29-49.

This article argues that Islam still plays a significant, if not a central role in Indonesian politics. It questions the notion that Indonesian voters have become “rational” and that religion no longer influences their electoral behaviour. The decline of Islamic parties’ electoral clout should be interpreted not as the decline of political Islam but instead the reverse: Islam has penetrated the dominant nationalist, secular and Pancasila based political parties and has made them stronger in their contest against Islamic parties, which are no longer the lone channel for Islamic aspirations. The fact that almost all parties have accommodated religious aspirations and shied away from criticizing controversial religious issues shows the strength of religious influence in Indonesian politics today. The rising number of shariah-based by-laws in many districts in which local legislative assemblies are dominated by nationalist or secular parties, the passage of potentially discriminative bills by the national parliament in which nationalist or secular parties predominant, and the weak political response to the case of violence against Ahmadiyah are prime examples of how religion is still a major force in Indonesian politics.

Tomsa, Dirk. 2012. “Moderating Islamism in Indonesia: Tracing Patterns of Party Change in the Prosperous Justice Party.” Political Research Quarterly 65 (September): 486-498.

This article analyzes why, how and to what extent Indonesia’s once staunchly Islamist Prosperous Justice Party (Partai Keadilan Sejahtera; PKS) has become more moderate through its participation in democratic procedures. It also examines how this moderation process has affected the party’s electoral performance and the overall quality of democracy in Indonesia. It is argued that PKS has indeed become more moderate and that this moderation has, after initial electoral success, now posed some serious challenges to the party’s organizational coherence. The article concludes by highlighting that moderation is a process that is neither linear nor unreservedly positive for democratization.

Tomsa, Dirk. 2007. “Party Politics and the Media in Indonesia: Creating a New Dual Identity for Golkar.” Contemporary Southeast Asia: A Journal of International & Strategic Affairs 29 (April): 77-96.

In 2004 the Golkar Party re-emerged as the strongest party in Indonesia when it returned to the top of the voting tally in the 2004 general election. One of the reasons that have been widely overlooked in explanations of the election results is the increasingly influential role of the media. This article will close this gap and argue that the media has directly contributed to Golkar’s good electoral performance in 2004 as it helped the former regime party to communicate a major image change to the general public. As this article will demonstrate. Golkar transformed itself between 1999 and 2004 from a party that was almost exclusively associated with the New Order to a party with a “dual identity”, somewhere between nostalgic status qua sentiment and modern democratic ideas. This new identity has helped the party to maintain its electoral appeal in the face of increasing anti-party sentiment in Indonesia.

Tomsa, Dirk. 2014. “Party System Fragmentation in Indonesia: The Subnational Dimension.” Journal of East Asian Studies 14 (May): 249-278.

In this article, the author analyzes the extent and causes of party system fragmentation in Indonesia’s provincial and district parliaments. Focusing on the results of the first three post-Suharto elections in 1999, 2004, and 2009, the author first highlights that local-level fragmentation is not only generally higher than national-level fragmentation but also that it has consistently increased over the three elections and that fragmentation has been particularly high in Eastern Indonesia. The author explains these three trends as a result of three main factors: First, electoral institutions applied between 1999 and 2009 facilitated fragmentation and poor party system institutionalization, mainly due to the introduction of an open list system in 2009 and the absence of a parliamentary threshold at the local level. Second, low levels of party institutionalization progressively individualized local party politics and made it normal for candidates to switch to smaller parties if it suited their interests, thereby exacerbating fragmentation. Third, electoral campaigning for local parliaments has been dominated by traditional methods based on personal relationships and networks rather than lavish public relations campaigns with expensive TV ads, further reinforcing the effects of the first two factors.

Tomsa, Dirk. 2012. “Still the Natural Government Party? Challenges and Opportunities for Golkar ahead of the 2014 Election.” South East Asia Research 20 (December): 491-509.

After decades of hegemonic rule during the New Order, the Golkar Party entered the post-Suharto era with the self-perception of being a natural part of the government. Two relatively successful elections in 1999 and 2004 reinforced this perception among the party faithful, but the disappointing results of the 2009 election have demonstrated that Golkar now faces serious challenges if it wants to retain its strong position in the Indonesian party system. This article assesses some of these challenges against the background of ongoing institutional reform in Indonesia, contentious personal ambitions of key political actors and wide-ranging socio-political transformations in the Indonesian electorate. Particular attention is paid to Golkar’s linkages with society, its organizational development and its functions within the broader political system. It is argued that Golkar’s main challenges lie in its difficulties in attracting new members and supporters, its eroding institutional infrastructure and its limited capacity to articulate societal interests and fulfil other basic democratic functions. However, the article concludes by emphasizing that Golkar has a genuine chance of regaining some of the ground lost in recent years if it tackles at least some of the challenges outlined.

Ufen, Andreas. 2013. “Lipset and Rokkan in Southeast Asia: Indonesia in the Comparative Perspective.” In Party Politics in Southeast Asia: Clientelism and Electoral Competition in Indonesia, Thailand, and the Philippines, eds. Dirk Tomsa and Andreas Ufen. New York: Routledge, 40–61.

This chapter starts with a brief outline of Lipset/Rokkan model and some criticism that has been raised recently. It proceeds with a reconstruction of cleavage evolution in Indonesia since colonial times, but with a focus on the post-Suharto years. In the main part of the chapter the author wants to demonstrate the potential of the cleavage model even outside of Europe. It helps illustrate the difference between parties and party systems in Southeast Asia

Ufen, Andreas. 2008. “Political Party and Party System Institutionalization in Southeast Asia: Lessons for Democratic Consolidation in Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand.” Pacific Review 21 (July): 327-350.

Is a higher degree of party and party system institutionalization positively correlated with the consolidation of democracy, defined here as the prevention of democratic breakdown? In order to answer this question, it is useful to compare different levels and types of institutionalization in three Southeast Asian electoral democracies. Institutionalized party systems are characterized, according to Mainwaring and Torcal, by ‘stability of interparty competition.’ Moreover, the distinction made by Levitsky (‘value infusion’ versus ‘behavioural routinization’) with reference to the institutionalization of individual parties will be employed. The empirical research of this paper finds that most Indonesian parties are better institutionalized than those in the Philippines and Thailand with reference to ‘value infusion.’ In addition, the interparty competition is more stable in Indonesia. Therefore, the probability of a collapse of the party system in the Philippines and Thailand is much higher. This, in turn, renders the democracies in these countries more fragile and prone to political crises or even sudden breakdowns. The early organizational consolidation of social cleavages, such as in Indonesia, enhances institutionalization. A few of the most important parties are socially rooted and have strong linkages to civil and/or religious organizations. Furthermore, the relationship between central and local elites appears to be essential: strong bosses or cliques undermine institutionalization in the Philippines and in Thailand, respectively. However, in recent years there has also been a tendency towards convergence. There are signs of regression in Indonesia, such that the future of the party system is open to question. This article calls for caution with respect to the stated causal relation between institutionalization and democratic consolidation, and it questions some aspects of the concept.

Woodward, Mark, Ali Amin, Inayah Rohmaniyah, and Chris Lundry. 2013. “Getting Culture: A New Path for Indonesia’s Islamist Justice and Prosperity Party?.” Contemporary Islam 7 (January): 173.

Partai Keadilan Sejahtera (PKS, The Justice and Prosperity Party) is the largest Islamist political party in Indonesia. It has roots in the religious and political and religious teachings of the Muslim Brotherhood and promotes what Oliver Roy calls ‘deculturized religion.’ The party can be understood as the political component of a larger social movement that seeks to transform Indonesian society and culture in ways that would establish Shari’ah as social, if not political, reality. It is also committed to the electoral process and to working inside the Indonesian political system in a more general sense. Until recently, the PKS has dismissed local modes of Muslim practice and much of Indonesian culture as ‘un-Islamic.’ The extent of the party’s transformative agenda is unclear for three reasons: it shares the Muslim Brotherhood’s gradualist approach, it is less than transparent about its goals, and it is divided into purist or ‘Justice’ and pragmatic or ‘Prosperity’ factions. The leadership of the Prosperity faction is currently ascendant and is attempting to reach beyond its Islamist base by sponsoring musical and dramatic performances it hopes will appeal to Muslims devoted to Javanese and other Indonesian cultural traditions. Ethnographic and web-based research indicated that these efforts are greeted with considerable suspicion.

Additional resources compiled by Camila Costadoni (March 30, 2015):

Bahramitash, Roksana. 2002. “Islamic Fundamentalism and Women’s Employment in Indonesia.” International Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society 16 (Winter): 255-272.

It is commonly observed that the economic position of women seems particularly precarious in countries where political Islam is on the ascendant. The usual interpretation is that the first condition is a result of the second. Drawing on evidence from a wide variety of countries, but particularly Indonesia, this paper demonstrates that Islamic doctrines are by no means universal, that they do not invariably discriminate against women in economic terms. A review of the recent economic and political changes leading to the rise of political Islam and changes in female labour market participation patterns suggests that establishing a causal relationship between the two is problematic and can be misleading. Evidence from Indonesia challenges ideological reductionism based on stereotypical assumptions about the impact of Islam to explain women’s economic roles.

Blackburn, Susan. “Indonesian women and political Islam.” Journal Of Southeast Asian Studies39, no. 1 (February 2008): 83-105.

An essay is presented exploring the relationship between women and Islam in twentieth century Indonesia. The effect of political groups on women’s roles is discussed, including such groups as the Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI), the Indonesian Islamic League Party (PSII), and the Indonesian Muslim Union (Permi). The effect of democratization and decentralization on gender roles is described, along with an analysis of women’s effect on political parties such as the Partai Keadilan Sejahtera.

Budianta, Melani. “Decentralizing Engagements: Women and the Democratization Process in Indonesia.” Signs 31 (Summer): 915-923.

In this essay I will look at the Indonesian democratization process critically from women’s perspectives by examining a number of issues affecting women’s lives, issues that have been raised by the democratization process itself. I will reflect on what Indonesian women activists have learned from engaging in day‐to‐day battles in the decentralized arena for power redistribution, not only about the ways democracy works and does not work for women but also about the challenges democracy poses for feminist politics.

Chakrabarty, Aditi. “Challenges before Megawati Sukarnoputri.” Economic and Political Weekly 36 (September): 3439-3441.

Symbolising as she does a regional phenomenon, Megawati, Indonesia’s first woman president needs to play a tough balancing act to hold different fissiparous trends together. Coupled with the need to implement harsh fiscal steps necessary for Indonesia’s rejuvenation, she has also to assuage violent assertions of ethnic identity that have erupted across several Indonesian provinces.

Hosen, Nadirsyah. “Human Rights Provisions in the Second Amendment to the Indonesian Constitution from Sharī‘ah Perspective.”Muslim World97, no. 2 (April 2007): 200-224.

The paper examines provisions of the Second Amendment to the 1945 Indonesian Constitution dealing with equality, women’s rights, freedom of religion and freedom of opinion, and then compares the terms of those provisions with similar provisions in the Cairo Declaration on Human Rights, the Universal Islamic Declaration of Human Rights (UIDHR) and the constitutions of several majority Muslim nations. On the basis that, unlike the Cairo Declaration, the UIDHR and the other constitutions, the Indonesian constitutional provisions make no explicit reference to Sharῑʿah or Islam despite the fact that Indonesia is the largest Muslim country in the world, the author concludes that Indonesian political parties who participated in enacting the amendments adhere to a substantive view of the Sharῑʿah.

Rinaldo, Rachel. 2008. “Envisioning the Nation: Women Activists, Religion and the Public Sphere in Indonesia.” Special Forces 86 (June): 1781-1804.

Indonesia’s Islamic revival has coincided with the growing involvement of women in civil society. Muslim women’s organizations are playing an important role in how the Indonesian nation-state is being re-imagined for the 21st century. Muslim women’s groups are incubators for women’s diverse political activism. The increasing role of Islam in the public sphere provides religious women with an important platform, facilitating their involvement in national debates over issues such as Shariah law, abortion and pornography. Such public sphere debates enfold significant struggles over the relationship between religion and the state. Through their involvement in these debates, Muslim women activists should be seen as participants in the renegotiation of the Indonesian nation-state.

Shair-Rosenfield, Sarah. “The alternative incumbency effect: Electing women legislators in Indonesia.” Electoral Studies31, no. 3 (September 2012): 576-587.

Between the 1999 and 2009 elections the proportion of national female legislators in Indonesia, the world”s largest Muslim majority democracy, more than doubled. While this substantial increase may partly be explained by the recent imposition of a gender quota and placement mandate that have forced parties to increase the number of female candidates, quotas cannot fully explain the strong performance of women in the 2009 elections. First, many parties placed women higher on their lists than the laws required; second, voters appeared to over vote for women in some districts. Although incumbency”s typical effect is to inhibit female electoral success by advantaging traditional (male) competitors, I argue that women benefited largely from an alternative effect: female incumbency can improve female candidate placement and electability by demonstrating female capacity and capability. Female newcomers benefited strongly from the presence of female incumbents in their own and bordering districts, thus suggesting a positive diffusion effect of female incumbency.

Shihab, Najwa, and Yanuar Nugroho. “The Ties that Bind: Law, Islamisation and Indonesia’s Prosperous Justice Party (PKS).”Australian Journal Of Asian Law10, no. 2 (December 2008): 233-267.

There are clear indications that Indonesia’s Prosperous Justice Party (Partai Keadilan Sejahtera or PKS) has shifted from being a hardline (garis keras) Islamist party, to take a more moderate stance, with significant changes to its platform. Prominent among these are decisions to step back from earlier demands for the enforcement of Islamic law and the creation of an Islamic state in Indonesia, as well as major modifications to doctrinal positions relating to the legal status of women as leaders, and formal relations with non-Muslims. This article investigates the factors that have contributed to this shift, and argues that it is a result of political processes in Indonesia that compel PKS to moderate its platform to expand its constituency. It is also argued that an ideological transformation has taken place within PKS, that the transformation is genuine, albeit contested internally, and that it is probably necessary for electoral success.

Wandita, Galuh. 1998. “The Tears Have Not Stopped, the Violence Has Not Ended: Political Upheaval, Ethnicity, and Violence against Women In Indonesia.” Gender and Development 6 (November): 34-41.

In May of this year, student protests sparked off riots, looting, and arson all over Indonesia. After the political situation had stabilized, accounts emerged of women from ethnic minorities being targets of horrific violence. The subsequent publicity and debate have enabled women survivors to make their voices heard for the first time, and to take action together.