"Theoretically sophisticated and empirically refreshing, The Technological State in Indonesia offers fascinating insight into the interplay of power, technology and authoritarian politics in late-New Order Indonesia. Rejecting a technologically deterministic perspective, Sulfikar Amir demonstrates convincingly how modernist visions, power relations and legitimacy needs shaped the process of technological adoption and development in Indonesia under Suharto. At the same time, Amir makes an original contribution to the study of Indonesian politics by showing that the New Order regime was much more than just a military dictatorship or a developmental state. This book fills a critical void in our knowledge of Indonesian politics in the late Suharto era." - Tuong Vu, University of Oregon, USA
"The book successfully argues that a national airplane project was viable and Indonesian engineers, given enough time, money and resources could develop a truly indigenous national airplane, notably the N250, which was to be the flagship of the project... This is a timely and important book that provides important lessons to both the Indonesian government and private sector in crafting a strategy to create a technological state." - Yohanes Sulaiman; Strategic Review, 2013.
"The author combines historical description and sociological analysis in an engaging way, and his analysis of the intersection between high-tech development and authoritarianism is reflected throughout the book." - R. Alpha Amirrachman; Contemporary Southeast Asia Vol. 35, No. 1, 2013.
'Amir’s book offers a new lens to understand New Order Indonesia through his focus on the career and achievements of B. J. Habibie, one of the New Order’s most enigmatic and powerful figures... Amir does a fine job of integrating techno-politics into standard accounts of the Indonesian state, making a strong case for the New Order as much more than just a military regime, but also a ‘technological state’... Amir’s careful account adds new insights to our understanding of the relation between technology and politics and its ability to establish powerful associations between the local, the national and the modern.' - Itty Abraham, National University of Singapore, Singapore; Science, Technology & Society 18:2, 2013.
About the Author
Sulfikar Amir is an Assistant Professor in the Division of Sociology at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His research interests include science and technology studies, technological politics, development, nationalism, globalization, sociology of risk, and resilience studies.