Project

Back to overview

Churches as agents in sustainable development projects: the case of Indonesia

Applicant Znoj Heinzpeter
Number 149273
Funding scheme Project funding (Div. I-III)
Research institution Institut für Sozialanthropologie Universität Bern
Institution of higher education University of Berne - BE
Main discipline Ethnology
Start/End 01.04.2014 - 31.03.2018
Approved amount 591'338.00
Show all

All Disciplines (2)

Discipline
Ethnology
General history (without pre-and early history)

Keywords (7)

Indonesia; anthropology of development; sustainable development; Churches; history of development; decentralization; orde baru

Lay Summary (German)

Lead
Seit den 1990er Jahren ist nachhaltige Entwicklung zum strategischen Ziel globaler Entwicklungspolitik geworden. Eine wichtige, bisher wenig beachtete Rolle in der Formulierung dieses Ziels spielten Kirchen in ehemaligen Kolonien wie Indonesien, welche bereits in den 1970er Jahren das verwandte Konzept der "ganzheitlichen Entwicklung" formuliert hatten.
Lay summary

Ziele des Forschungsprojekts

Wie bereits in der Kolonialzeit übernahmen die christlichen Kirchen auch in den ersten Jahrzehnten der Unabhängigkeit Indonesiens im Erziehungs- und Gesundheitswesen Aufgaben, die der Staat in weiten Gebieten nicht leisten konnte. Im mehrheitlich muslimischen Land konnten sich die europäisch dominierten Kirchen so als Partnerinnen der modernistischen staatlichen Entwicklungspolitik legitimieren. Dabei setzten sie jedoch zunehmend eigene Akzente, welche im Sinne einer "ganzheitlichen Entwicklung" neben wirtschaftlichen auch soziale, ökologische und spirituelle Ziele einbezogen.

Das Projekt setzt sich zum Ziel, in einem historischen Teil die Periode zwischen 1970 und 1990 aufzuarbeiten, als kirchliche Akteure zur Ausformulierung und Umsetzung nachhaltiger Entwicklungsziele beitrugen.

Ein sozialanthropologischer Teil untersucht die gegenwärtige Rolle der Kirchen in der Umsetzung nachhaltiger Entwicklungsziele. Die Ablösung europäischer Missionare durch einheimische Geistliche bedeutet dabei in vielen Fällen die Ausrichtung der Kirchen weg von säkularen Entwicklungszielen und hin zur inneren Mission.

 

Wissenschaftlicher und gesellschaftlicher Kontext

Das Projekt zielt auf die Aufarbeitung der jüngsten Geschichte und Gegenwart des Christentums in Indonesien im Übergang von spätkolonialer Verfasstheit zu seiner Indigenisierung.

Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.01.2014

Responsible applicant and co-applicants

Employees

Publications

Publication
The New Missionaries of Development: The Indonesian Council of Churches and Village Development Projects, 1971-1982
Rui Noëmi (2018), The New Missionaries of Development: The Indonesian Council of Churches and Village Development Projects, 1971-1982, in Feener Michael (ed.), Brill, Leiden, 107-134.
Freiheit in West-Papua – ein Reisebericht
Znoj Heinzpeter (2017), Freiheit in West-Papua – ein Reisebericht, in Kuhn Konrad (ed.), 514-527.

Scientific events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Title of article or contribution Date Place Persons involved
Colloquium of the Institute of Social Anthropology Individual talk Regulating Succession: the challenge to secure the future of long-term development work in West Flores 29.05.2018 University of Bern, Switzerland Zurschmitten Raaflaub Sabine;
Ethnologiekolloquium at the Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies Individual talk The (UN-)Holy Trinity: Papuans' Challenges to European Paradigms of Sovereignty, Development, and Human Rights 13.03.2018 University of Zürich, Switzerland Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Social Anthropology Institute Colloquium Talk given at a conference Indigenous Church, Endogenous Modernity 21.11.2017 University of Bern, Switzerland Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Annual Conference of the Swiss Society of Social Anthropology (SEG), ‘Norms and Alternatives’, Panel ‘Christianity, Development and Sustainability in the Global South’ Talk given at a conference The Making of Contextual Sustainable Development: Protestant Ethnic Churches in Eastern Indonesia and Their Discourses of Development 11.11.2017 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Van Eeuwijk Peter;
Swiss Anthropological Association (SAA) Annual Meeting Talk given at a conference Endogenous Christianity, Development, and Self-determination in West Papua 09.11.2017 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Annual Meeting of the Swiss Anthropological Association, Norms and Alternatives - Anthropological approaches to practices and narratives of change Talk given at a conference Regulating Succession: the challenge to secure the future of long-term development work in West Flores 09.11.2017 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Zurschmitten Raaflaub Sabine;
Annual Meeting of the Swiss Anthropological Association, Norms and Alternatives - Anthropological approaches to practices and narratives of change Talk given at a conference Attempts at an alternative development policy - Ways to cooperation in the 1970s 09.11.2017 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland Rui Noëmi;
South-East-Asia Meet-up, Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Southeast Asia Poster Churches as Agents in Sustainable Development: the case of Indonesia 15.09.2017 University of Zürich, Switzerland Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju; Zurschmitten Raaflaub Sabine; Rui Noëmi; Van Eeuwijk Peter;
Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Southeast Asia University of Zurich Talk given at a conference Churches, Development, and Indigenous Politics in West Papua 15.09.2017 University of Zürich, Switzerland Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Institute of Anthropology, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences (FISIP), ‘Sam Ratulangi’ University Individual talk Protestant and Muslim Faith-Based Organisations in Eastern Indonesia and Their Understanding of Sustainable Development 01.09.2017 Manado, Indonesia Van Eeuwijk Peter;
Conference: How to Change the World - Entangled Histories of Development Talk given at a conference The translation from a global concept to a local Project – The case of village development in Indonesia 26.05.2017 Shanghai University, China Rui Noëmi;
International Research Evaluation Workshop of the Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education of the Republic of Indonesia Talk given at a conference Churches as Agents in Sustainable Development Projects: The Case of Protestant Ethnic Churches in Eastern Indonesia 26.04.2017 Jakarta, Indonesia Van Eeuwijk Peter;
DevNet Conference 2016, "Pacific Currents, Global Tides" Talk given at a conference Churches as Agents of Village Development Projects 1975 – 1985 – The Case of Indonesia 07.12.2016 School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand Rui Noëmi;
Research-Cluster ARI Individual talk Global development concepts and their implementation on a local level – Churches as Agents in sustainable development in Indonesia 1965-1991 17.11.2016 National University of Singapore, Singapore Rui Noëmi;
International Conference ‘Does Religion Make a Difference? Discourses and Activities of Religious NGOs in Development’ Talk given at a conference Does Religion Make a Difference? A Conclusion 09.11.2016 Centre for Religion, Economics and Politics (ZRWP), Faculty of Theology, University of Basel, Switzerland Van Eeuwijk Peter;
6th International Symposium of Journal Antropologi Indonesia Talk given at a conference The Politics of Equality and Difference: Churches, Citizenship, and Identity Politics in Flores and Papua 26.07.2016 Universitas Indonesia, Indonesia Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Forschungskolloquium zur Geschichte nach 1800, Historisches Institut Individual talk Die Suche nach einem nachhaltigen Entwicklungskonzept - PGI und der Einfluss des WCC 1968 – 1986 16.12.2015 University of Bern, Switzerland Rui Noëmi;
Conference: The Mission of Development: Religion and Techno-Politics in Asia Talk given at a conference The struggle for a Sustainable Development Concept –Persekutuan Gereja-Gereja di Indonesia and the influence of the World Council of Churches 1968-1978 03.12.2015 Asia Research Institut (ARI), National University of Singapore, Singapore Rui Noëmi;
8th International Indonesia Forum Conference: Discourses Exploring the Space between Tradition and Modernity in Indonesia Talk given at a conference The Concept of Sustainability and its adaption in the World Council of Churches: Case study Indonesia 29.07.2015 Seblas Maret State University, Surakarta, Indonesia Rui Noëmi;
7th Southeast Asia Update Talk given at a conference Churches, development, and emancipatory politics in Papua and Flores – Indonesia 19.06.2015 KITLV and International Institute of Asian Studies, Netherlands Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju;
Seminar: An Empire of Humanity? Entwicklungszusammenarbeit und Religion aus sozialanthropologischer Perspektive, Institut für Religionswissenschaft Individual talk Das Konzept der Nachhaltigkeit – Entwicklung eines Konzeptes innerhalb einer globalen Organisation: WCC 25.03.2015 Universität Bern, Switzerland Rui Noëmi;
First Workshop of the research project: Churches as Agents in Sustainable Development Projects: The Case of Indonesia Talk given at a conference The concept of 'Sustainable Development' in Christian development projects 1968 - 1992: The case of Indonesia 19.03.2015 University of Bern, Switzerland Rui Noëmi;
Workshop Churches as Agents in Sustainable Development Projects: The Case of Indonesia from Perspectives of Social Anthropology and History Talk given at a conference Churches as Agents in Sustainable Development Projects: The Case of Protestant Ethnic Churches in Indonesia 19.03.2015 University of Bern, Switzerland Van Eeuwijk Peter;


Self-organised

Title Date Place
Annual Conference of the Swiss Society of Social Anthropology (SEG), ‘Norms and Alternatives’, Panel ‘Christianity, Development and Sustainability in the Global South’ 11.11.2017 University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland

Knowledge transfer events

Active participation

Title Type of contribution Date Place Persons involved
Poster presentation at the 50th anniversary of the Institute of Social Anthropology Poster 26.04.2017 University of Bern, Switzerland Rui Noëmi; Gerlach Christian; Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju; Znoj Heinzpeter; Zurschmitten Raaflaub Sabine; Van Eeuwijk Peter;
Sustainable University Day 2014 Poster 01.04.2014 University of Bern, Switzerland Gerlach Christian; Zurschmitten Raaflaub Sabine; Znoj Heinzpeter; Dale Cyprianus Jehan Paju; Rui Noëmi; Van Eeuwijk Peter;


Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
62465 Indonesian Corruption in Context. 01.04.2001 Project funding (special)

Abstract

Research on Churches as agents in development projects has been a blind spot or even a “taboo” (Van Beek 2000) in research about development until very recently. Addressing specifically the role of the Churches in sustainable development (SD), this project aims at demonstrating that the contribution of the Churches in the historical configuration and the ongoing reconfiguration of that concept has been under-estimated so far.Since the 1990s, the concept of SD has been established as a strategic paradigm designed to balance out social, ecological, and economic aspects in view of preserving the resources needed for the livelihood of future generations (WCED 1987). SD has been central to the 1992 Rio Declaration of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development and to the formulation of the UN Millenium Development Goals for the period 2000-2015. These declarations aimed at replacing the modernist, technocratic vision of unrestrained economic development that had held sway since the middle of the 20th century. But how are the policy papers calling for SD translated into practice? The secular (or "socio-economic", in Church parlance) Christian development projects in the global South are useful test cases for understanding this issue. Churches in the South have been active in secular deve-lopment primarily in the sectors of health and education since the colonial era. But while they have been supportive of the general development goals of post-colonial states, many Churches remained sceptical of the high-modernist (Scott 1998), top-down development schemes that many of these states pursued. In their community-building, the Churches in contrast prioritized “holistic”, “community-based” develop-ment since the 1970s (Zaugg-Ott 2004). This project explores from historical and anthropological perspec-tives in how far ideas of “holistic development” influenced principles of SD even before they entered the mainstream international development discourse and what impact these ideas had and still have on actu-al Church-led development projects in one country, namely Indonesia.Indonesian Churches are instructive cases because they have been confronted in the recent past with political, legal, and religious contexts, many of which present somewhat typical obstacles for Church-led SD: the Indonesian political elites still largely favor modernist development; legal insecurity and corrup-tion in connection with a deeply rooted patronage system make SD enterprises vulnerable to fraud and expropriation; and the rising tensions within the Indonesian religious field dominated by a 90 percent Muslim majority imposes other priorities on Churches than engagement in SD.This project combines historical and anthropological methods. The historical sub-project will focus on the orde baru government, more specifically on the period between 1975 and 1995, before and after the first introduction of the concept of SD in project designs. It will do so in regard to several Churches and across different levels of action from the transnational to the local, with an emphasis on non-Indonesian agents. The anthropological subprojects will consist of in-depth local case studies of contemporary development practice involving a multitude of local and foreign actors in projects coordinated by the Swiss-based Pro-testant "Mission21" and their Indonesian partner Churches in Sulawesi and Java as well as the Catholic congregation "Societas Verbi Divini" (SVD) in Flores and the Capuchins in West Kalimantan.
-