Visiting the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) for Dataverse

I just got back from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia or LIPI) where Sonia Barbosa and I were invited to give talks and participate in workshops in Jakarta and Bandung entitled “Managing and Sharing of Research Data to Increase Research Quality.”

LIPI recently launched a research data repository for all researchers in Indonesia called Repositori Ilmiah Nasional (RIN) at and last week’s workshops were oriented toward getting their researchers and librarians more familiar with data sharing in general and Dataverse in particular.

The group within LIPI that invited us is the Center for Scientific Documentation and Information (Pusat Dokumentasi Informasi Ilmiah or PDII) and Slamet Riyanto, the researcher who coordinated our visit, already blogged about the event, linking to our talks and sharing a couple pictures. We were formally invited by Sri Hartinah, who is a researcher and former head of PDII.

Our flight arrived in Jakarta the morning of Monday, May 7th. Slamet and Sjaeful Afandi picked us up at the airport and brought us to the LIPI office to meet the team from PDII who are most involved in Dataverse, have a quick tour, and get some lunch. Thank you to Sjaeful, pictured below, for picking up some gado-gado! We met Hendro Subagyo, the new head of PDII, Ekawati Marlina, Data Quality Manager, and Wasi Tri Prasetya, Division Head of Facilities for Information Access.

On Tuesday we toured the facility and met with Mego Pinandito, Deputy Chairman for Scientific Services at LIPI, who is very supportive of the new RIN repository.

Tuesday afternoon was spent training PDII librarians on Dataverse. Sonia took the stage and I answered technical questions on the side. Lunch was ayam goreng (fried chicken).

Wednesday was the workshop in Jakarta. We handed out Dataverse bags and took our seats as L. T. Handoko, Deputy Chairman for Engineering Sciences, made his opening remarks. Sonia and I gave a talk entitled Managing, Sharing and Curating Your Research Data in a Digital Environment followed by my talk entitled Analyzing Research Data Using the Dataverse Framework where I demo’ed a new addon for Dataverse called Data Explorer. Slamet gave a talk entitled Introducing Scientific Repository as Research Data Management and Analysis Tool in Indonesia but the slides are in English.

After lunch (sate and soup), the rest of the talks were in Indonesian so Sri Hartinah, Madiareni Sulaiman, and Seno Yudhanto, brought us to Jakata’s “mini garden” to see a variety of traditional houses from different parts of Indonesia. We spent a little time in Bali.

We also enjoyed some locally made coffee (from Sumatra for me).

Wednesday evening took at train to Bandung. Thursday was a holiday and we took a trip to Tangkuban Perahu, which reminded me of Yellowstone except that I didn’t eat eggs cooked in a hot spring there.

We also visited Maribaya, which had a waterfall and a zoo.

We ended our holiday with a trip to Saung Angklung Udjo where we enjoyed a “young coconut” treat while we waited for the show to start. There was a puppet show, dancing, and children playing an angklung.

On Friday we held a workshop in Bandung that was similar to Wednesday’s workshop in Jakarta. The opening remarks were made by Hendro Subagyo, the head of PDII.

One of the talks was given by Usman Muchlish from the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) which runs an installation of Dataverse at and since he’s a long time Dataverse user, I was happy to pick his brain about ways we can improve the software. I also enjoyed the talk about HPC by Esa Prakasa.

After the workshop we met with Tommy Hendrix, Head of Research and Development, and Penny Sylvania Putri, Head of Multimedia, about videos that LIPI is making to promote their work and inspire children to consider careers in science.

LIPI takes 30 day expeditions all over the county to conduct science and I enjoyed the video they showed us about an expedition to Sumba island so much I couldn’t help tweeting about it. You can watch it on YouTube.

They are interested in making the raw footage and photos available to the world! Tagging the videos and photos with appropriate metadata is important for them and they are considering using Dataverse.

With the workshops behind us, our friends from LIPI continued to take us sightseeing over the weekend, visiting Kawah Putih, Situ Patengan, and rice fields.

On Sunday morning we woke up in Bandung, took a train back to Jakarta, did a little shopping, and made our way to the airport for a long flight home.

Thank your very much to LIPI for inviting me and Sonia to visit your institution and Indonesia! I’d especially like to thank Slamet, Sjaeful, and Rishadi (all pictured above) for showing us their beautiful country and making us feel so welcome. There are too many others to thank individually here, but I appreciate all of the hospitality from everyone at LIPI!

I have many more pictures, videos, and stories I could share but please watch this space where I’ll try to post more on a personal blog which I’ll link to from here. Update: for more pictures, please see the post about my trip to Indonesia on my personal blog.

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