In the 21st century everything is interconnected. Through interconnectivity, most anyone can access information faster and with greater ease, in particular with technological advancements. Many developing nations have grown more rapidly than they otherwise would have because of globalization. Some are approaching par with developed nations, both economically and militarily. With their growing economies, these countries have been able to allocate more funding for military development – both hardware, which touches on weapons systems and platforms, and software, which focuses on human capital.
Indonesia is one of the countries that has enjoyed the benefits of globalization. As one of the world’s 10 largest economies, according to the World Bank, Indonesia has shown impressive economic growth, allowing it to quadruple its defense budget within the last decade. With its Minimum Essential Forces (MEF) expansion project, Indonesia is projected to modernize its military platforms by 2024. Jakarta has purchased modern armaments and weapons systems, and has signed agreements on jointly developing additional weapons systems with a number of countries. Similarly, Indonesia is revamping its own national defense industry. Combined with an offset strategy that facilitates transfers of technology from partnering countries, Indonesia has started a new chapter in its military transformation.
Nevertheless, limitations remain in developing human capital within the Armed Forces. Although Indonesia established its own defense university in March 2009, the military continues to follow a conventional model in managing its human resources. This is a concern. Having to deal with a very dynamic environment in the 21st century, a military officer should be adaptive and versatile. Of course, this would complement the basic requirements of having a solid intellectual capability and consistent performance.
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