Infrastructure is a sector that plays an important role in increasing a country’s economic growth, one of which is by providing connectivity that facilitates the community and mobilizes people, goods and services from one place to other various regions of Indonesia, so as to encourage equitable distribution of national development and increase productivity, competitiveness, and investment opportunities.

In the inaugural speech for the Professor of the University of Indonesia (UI) which was held in a hybrid manner on Saturday (26/3), Prof. Mohammed Ali Berawi, M.Eng.Sc., Ph.D., explained four discussions of infrastructure development, the first is the importance of value-added infrastructure development planning to increase project feasibility. Prof. Ali Berawi conducted several studies and research on infrastructure projects including by developing a conceptual design of an integrated infrastructure called the Public Railways and Stormwater Infrastructure (PRASTI) Tunnel, the construction of a Sunda Strait bridge, and the development of a smart city for the State Capital (IKN).

PRASTI Tunnel is a concept for constructing an underground tunnel for the train line which is planned to be integrated with a flood control channel, so that it is expected to be able to provide high efficiency and effectiveness for the construction of infrastructure megaprojects. PRASTI Tunnel functions as a commercial infrastructure in order to relieve congestion as well as a social infrastructure that can control floods in Jakarta by integrating three main functions in one tunnel, which consists of public transportation facilities, airport trains, and flood control (stormwater).

“Our various studies on infrastructure projects have shown that by generating added value in infrastructure development, additional revenue from concessions for other types of integrated development sectors will be able to increase the project’s feasibility, so that the development benefits obtained can be more optimal. Therefore, the efficiency and effectiveness of financing as well as the creation of added value for projects need to be the basis for planning infrastructure development in an effort to optimize the availability and limited funding for infrastructure development in Indonesia,” said the Professor in the field of civil engineering.

Smart city development for IKN aims to produce resilient and sustainable cities by producing better city services, including improvements in transportation, water resources, waste disposal, to health services. According to Prof. Ali Berawi, the smart city concept contributes to the formation of a high-quality, healthy and regenerative built environment that is modeled on the basis of a circular economy and with an overall positive impact on the environment.

“The second infrastructure development is the feasibility of infrastructure development accompanied by the effectiveness and efficiency of infrastructure financing patterns that can be increased through a cooperation scheme between the government and business entities. With this collaboration, the government will get relief in the provision of public infrastructure. In addition, the private parties involved will benefit from project implementation and the community will have access to better infrastructure without the need to feel burdened in terms of financing,” he said.

The third discussion is the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact on economic growth on infrastructure development. The adjustment of work patterns and interactions in a “new normal” situation that causes a slowdown in the implementation of ongoing infrastructure project development activities must be anticipated by the parties concerned. This is to maintain financial resilience and cash flow so that cost performance, time and quality of construction work can be controlled properly. Therefore, as an effort to reduce disparities and simultaneously restore the economy due to the pandemic, infrastructure development needs to be continued by considering optimizing benefits.

Lastly, the Role of Digital Technology. According to Prof. Ali Berawi, Industry 4.0 emerged with technological advances that could create added value, leading to the adaptation of people’s lifestyles (Society 5.0) and the importance of maintaining the sustainability of natural resource ecosystems (Nature 5.0) in order to increase productivity and quality of life. “In the context of the construction sector and infrastructure development, these technological advances offer great potential in improving project performance and increasing worker productivity. Development using environmentally friendly technology and materials is needed to be able to provide solutions for the sustainability of the earth, both in reducing carbon emissions, climate change, and the use of natural resources in order to achieve economic growth, improve people’s quality of life and maintain environmental sustainability. become the 4th UI professor in 2022.

This professor inauguration activity was broadcast live virtually through the Youtube channel of the Universitas Indonesia and was attended by various invited guests, including the Minister of State Secretary of the Republic of Indonesia Prof. Dr. Pratikno, M.Soc.Sc., Drs. Rudiantara, MBA (Minister of Communication and Information for the period 2014-2019), Member of the Presidential Advisory Council (Wantimpres) RI Muhamad Mardiono, Minister of Public Works and Public Housing, Dr. Ir. M. Basuki Hadimuljono, M.Sc., Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of the Financial Services Authority Prof. Wimboh Santoso, S.E., M.Sc., Ph.D.; The Head of the Archipelago IKN Authority, Dr. Ir. Bambang Susantono, MCP., MSCE., Chair of MWA UI, Saleh Husin, and Prof. Dr. Ir. Muhammad Anis, M.Met (Rector of the University of Indonesia for the period 2014-2019).

Prof. Ali is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Value World, the journal of the Society of American Value Engineers (SAVE International) (2008-2014) and Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Technology (IJTech), and is involved in various consulting and research collaborations both nationally and internationally. Various national and international awards were given to Prof. Ali, including the Best Young Research Lecturer and Best Research Lecturer at the University of Indonesia (2009), Finalist for the UK Alumni Award (2008) and Toray Science and Technology Award (2014), Top Scientists Indonesia in international databases, Webometrics (2015-2017), 500 The Best Indonesian Researcher according to the Indonesian Ministry of Research and Technology (2020), and the World’s Top 2% Scientist by Stanford University (2021). In 2002, he completed his education at the University of Malaya, and earned a Master of Engineering Science, and earned a Ph.D in value engineering from Oxford Brookes University UK, in 2006.


Public Communication Bureau
Faculty of Engineering, Universitas Indonesia