YOGYAKARTA – The Norwegian government collaborates with Universitas Gadjah Mada to conduct research related to power, welfare and democracy. Signing of cooperation agreement was done at Senate Hall, Wednesday (28/11) between UGM and Agder University and Oslo University, Norway, by UGM Rector, Prof. Dr. Pratikno, M.Soc., M.Sc., and Agder University Rector, Torunn Lauvdal, and Oslo University was represented by Dean of Psychology, Fanny Duckert. Crown Prince Hakoon Magnus and Norway Deputy Foreign Minister Gry Larsen were witnessing the signing.
HRH Hakoon Magnus said his visit to Yogyakarta is the first although cooperation between Indonesia and Norway was started in 1992. UGM in his opinion is a renown university, known for education and centre for cross-culture and interfaith. “We are bringing several missions in the visit to Indonesia while the cooperation with UGM is in education,” he said.
In the visit to Indonesia, apart from meeting the President, the Norway royal entourage is accompanied by dozens of businessmen to do trade cooperation and investment in Indonesia. The trade cooperation covers telecommunication, infrastructure, transportation, oil and gas, agriculture and animal husbandry. “We also collaborate in renewable energy,” he said.
Prof. Dr. Pratikno, M.Soc., M.Sc. said the collaboration covers faculty and student exchange and other academic areas.
He said that interest of Indonesian young people to study in Norway is increasing significantly and vice versa. At UGM there is a student community that learns Norwegian language and culture. “There is a student group studying Scandinavia, they learn about culture, politics and language,” he said.
The academic collaboration between UGM with Norwegian universities will last for 5 years from 2012 to 2017. He hoped that the collaboration would give significant impact to academic climate of both parties.
Deputy Minister Gry Larsen in her speech stressed the importance of dialogue in resolving conflict. She said that dialogue does not mean accepting other’s opinion but looking for agreement between conflicting parties. Democracy, tolerance and dialogue are important for conflict resolution around the world. “Although dialogue is difficult to make but it’s better than military approach. Dialogue and tolerance can become a solution for political problems,” she concluded.