Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat

Dr. Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat is a journalist and academician from Indonesia. He is currently a lecturer at Universitas Islam Indonesia and a research associate at Jakarta-based Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (INDEF). Muhammad holds a B.A. in International Affairs from Qatar University, as well as an M.A. and Ph.D in Politics from the University of Manchester in the UK. As an academic, his research focuses on China/Indonesia-Middle East relations. Meanwhile, as a journalist, he works on Indonesian politics and disability issues. Dr. Rakhmat is also the founder and CEO of Sekolabilitas, an Indonesia-based NGO dedicated to assisting children with disabilities in accessing education.

Indonesia Needs to Negotiate with China

Apr 18, 2019

The outcome of the election may be unclear, but the next president of Indonesia should take notes on how to do business with China. On April 17, Indonesians went to the polls to vote for a new president. Although the official result will be announced in May, “quick counts” by...

Indonesia Is Spending Big on Infrastructure

Feb 25, 2019

With an election on the horizon, President Jokowi needs to justify his spending on Indonesia’s infrastructure. On April 17, Indonesians will head to the polls for a presidential election. To help choose the best person for the job, election debates have been held between the two candidates, President Joko Widodo...

Asian Para Games Can Bring Change to Indonesia

Oct 11, 2018

The Asian Para Games can bring change to Indonesia so it can be more friendly to people with disabilities. The 2018 Asian Para Games is currently taking place in Jakarta. The multi-sport event is held every four years for athletes with physical disabilities. A total of 2,762 athletes with special...

Indonesia Needs to Educate on Natural Disasters

Oct 04, 2018

After another earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia, it is clear that people are not taught what to do in the event of natural disasters. Indonesia has once again been hit by a natural disaster. On September 28, a 7.5-magnitude earthquake followed by a tsunami struck the cities of Palu and...

This Is What Indonesia Needs

Aug 31, 2018

As Indonesians brace themselves for another election in 2019, they must stop politicizing religion and identity. In Southeast Asia, Indonesia is set to hold its presidential election in April 2019. Citizens will choose a candidate to lead the nation until 2024, and the excitement can be felt among the people....

Understanding the Surabaya Attacks in Indonesia

May 15, 2018

The Jokowi government must reexamine the political map in Indonesia to better understand its supporters and opponents. On May 14, a suicide bombing took place at a police headquarters in Surabaya, Indonesia. The perpetrators were a family of five riding on two motorbikes. The incident took place a day after...

The Problem with Freedom of Speech in Indonesia

May 09, 2018

Once again, blasphemy has caused a stir in Indonesia — this time over what counts as fiction. In April, Indonesians were shocked by a statement made by a well-known lecturer in philosophy at the University of Indonesia. In a televised debate, Rocky Gerung said that “Scriptures are fictional and there...

Time to Make a Change This World Autism Day

Apr 02, 2018

On World Autism Day, it’s about time that we stop our inconsiderate behavior toward disabled people. This year marks one decade since April 2 was declared as World Autism Awareness Day by the United Nations. It is aimed at increasing knowledge about autism in an attempt to advance the rights...

Making the World Aware of Disabilities… and Then?

Dec 03, 2017

It is time for us to stop talking about awareness and start making real change now. It is time to get our hands dirty. On December 3, the world marks the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. It is a time when many individuals and organizations run events dedicated to...

Inside an Indonesian Special-Needs School

Nov 24, 2017

In this guest edition of The Interview, Dikanaya Tarahita and Muhammad Zulfikar Rakhmat talk to Mawar Sari Hidayat, a teacher at an Indonesian special-needs school. Education is a major problem for disabled people in Indonesia. Regular schools are often unwilling admit and accommodate those with disabilities. As a result, these...

Load More