YOGYAKARTA – Universitas Gadjah Mada has allocated research funds for 86 librarians at UGM through competitive grants. This is done to encourage their interest in research and increase research results in library-related matters; the grant is the first at UGM. “This grant is the first to be allocated for librarians,” Head of UGM Library, Drs. Ida Fajar Priyanto, M.A., said after opening a Workshop Successful in Information and Library Research at the Library Unit 2, on Friday (11/2). Present as speakers were Dr. Rer. Nat. Ria Amunanto, S.Si., M.Si. (LPPM UGM), Treesia (I-Group Singapore), and Putu Laxman Pendit (RMIT University, Australia).
Ida Fajar said that the UGM Library this year would get research grants in information and library from LPPM UGM. In his opinion, the grant serves as a step to improve librarians' skills in information and library research to support the UGM vision and mission as a research university, and increase the visibility of UGM Library both nationally and internationally. "We conduct the Workshop in stages in order to obtain librarians who have the skills in research,” he said.
Dr. Rer. Nat. Ria Amunanto, S.Si., M.Si said that the grant for librarians is one form of special functional occupation. In her opinion, this grant would build self-confidence for functional staff to continue to perform through research activities. "The research that is in line with their own expertise would certainly help advance UGM in research areas,” she said.
In that occasion, Ria also gave some tips and tricks to win the grant. She mentioned that each proposal approved by the LPPM UGM would receive as much as 7,5 million rupiah in fund.
Putu Laxman Pendit, Ph.D., researcher from RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia, criticised the technology ignorance in most of Indonesian libraries. Technology application in libaries is seen as procedural technical matters. The government is also seen as ignoring technology application in libraries by not providing funds which caused librarians' inabilities in making decisions on technology choices. “The result is that librarian's profesionalism has been reduced only to technical activities such as receiving, storing and maintaining books,” he said.