News Details | 18-Nov-2010

Bakrie Center Foundation makes S$3 million gift to RSIS at NTU

The gift will go towards setting up an endowment for a new professorship as well a scholarship fund


Nanyang Technological University (NTU) today announced it has received a gift of  S$3 million from the Bakrie Center Foundation of Indonesia to establish and endow a new Professorship in Southeast Asia Policy at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS). With matching funds from the Singapore government, the core endowment will total S$6 million. 

In addition to the establishment of the Professorship, NTU also announced the creation of the Bakrie Graduate Fellowship Scholarship Fund. Four scholarships worth S$30,000 each year will be awarded to deserving young scholars from the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) region over the next five years.   

The Bakrie Professorship will be a prime anchor in providing thought leadership and advancing knowledge and insights in Southeast Asia policy.  The Bakrie Professor is also expected to mentor young faculty members and research scholars, while attracting other top academics and researchers with interests in Southeast Asia to NTU.
“I want to thank the Bakrie Center Foundation for generously contributing to NTU,” said NTU President, Dr Su Guaning. “The new Bakrie professorship will strengthen academic and intellectual leadership at the highest level within RSIS and the university.  The Bakrie Professor and young scholars will also contribute to important scholarly discussions about political, economic and socio-cultural developments within the dynamic and fast-growing region of Southeast Asia. This will benefit Singapore, ASEAN and the wider international community in the long run, as we gain vital insights into the increasingly complex policy issues and challenges that will confront us in the coming years.”

Mr Anindya Novyan Bakrie, Founder and Chairman of the Bakrie Center Foundation and CEO of Bakrie Telecom, said, “The Bakrie Professor will shape knowledge on Indonesia and Southeast Asia, having a critical bearing on policy towards a region growing in economic clout and geopolitical influence. The RSIS is an ideal host because of its valuable regional networks, and an established tradition of assessing political and economic trends in Southeast Asia.”

"Strengthening the study of Southeast Asia is one of the highest priorities of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies," said Ambassador Barry Desker, Dean of the RSIS.  "The endowment and establishment of the new Bakrie Professorship and Bakrie Graduate Fellowship Scholarship Fund marks an important milestone in the history of the RSIS.  The presence of such an accomplished scholar will enable RSIS to advance scholarship and understanding of Southeast Asia to new levels of excellence, while complementing the current faculty's expertise in Indonesia and Southeast Asia. 

“I am equally confident that the Bakrie Professor will attract some of the most outstanding international affairs scholars and students in the world to the RSIS and Singapore.  This will help us to nurture a future generation of scholars who will be equipped with a solid foundation and holistic knowledge to respond to the evolving geo-political landscape in Southeast Asia and the world.” 

A search is under way to fill the Professorship with a distinguished scholar, whose teaching and research are not only centred in Southeast Asia, but relate to other areas of strategic and international studies, thereby forging links to other scholars in NTU and beyond.  The RSIS will invite applications for the Bakrie Graduate Fellowship from Academic Year 2010.

Named after one of Singapore’s founding fathers, the late Mr. S. Rajaratnam who held various Cabinet appointments including Singapore’s first foreign minister, the RSIS has, over the years, built a reputation of excellence as a leading research and graduate teaching institution in strategic and international affairs in the Asia Pacific. Its strategic research domains include Asia Pacific Security, Conflict and Non-Traditional Security, and International Political Economy.  The RSIS also maintains active programmes on China, India, Indonesia, and the United States.

Today, the RSIS offers both Masters and PhD research programmes in Strategic Studies, International Relations, Asian Studies and International Political Economy, and is widely recognised as one of the premier think-tanks in the region.  In January 2010, the RSIS was ranked third among more than 1,000 other Asian think tanks ranked in the Global ‘Go-To Think Tanks’ rankings conducted by the University of Pennsylvania’s Think Tank and Civil Societies Programme. By virtue of its ranking in Asia, RSIS is the top think tank in Singapore.

Some of the more prominent graduates of the RSIS are: Agus Harimurti Yudhoyono and Edhie Baskoro Yudhoyono, sons of Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono; Loro Horta, son of Timor Leste President José Ramos-Horta; and Hekmat Karzai, a cousin of Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

*** END ***

Media contact:

Feisal Abdul Rahman
Senior Assistant Director (Publicity, Media & Account Relations)
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University
Tel: (65) 6790 6687


About the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies

The S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) was officially inaugurated on 1 January 2007. Before that, it was known as the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies (IDSS), which was established 10 years earlier, on 30 July 1996. Like its predecessor, RSIS was established as an autonomous entity within Nanyang Technological University (NTU).

The School exists to develop a community of scholars and policy analysts at the forefront of Asia-Pacific security studies and international affairs. Its three core functions are research, graduate teaching and networking activities in the Asia-Pacific region. It produces cutting-edge security related research in Asia-Pacific Security, Conflict and Non-Traditional Security, International Political Economy, and Country and Area Studies.

The School‘s activities are aimed at assisting policymakers to develop comprehensive approaches to strategic thinking on issues related to security and stability in the Asia-Pacific and their implications for Singapore.

For more information, visit 


About Nanyang Technological University



Share Article