In last conference I was asked by one Poland professor. He asked me about my research. In what area of research I involved in. After I explained my research to him (in a briefly way), he nodded and said “it is an interesting topic you did. I’ve read about it but I never see it until now. I hope you can finish your research and come back here (in the next conference) 2 years from now. I’d like to hear more.”
I thanked him. Actually, it was hard to explained to such great great great scientists who came to this conference. Seems like I had butterflies in my stomach and goose-bumps in my skin while I told him about my research.
We had a good conversation in lunch time also. He asked me again where did I get the fund for my research. I told him, none. “Even from the government?”. Yes. I nodded. He seemed shocked and said “How come? In my country every little thing that we did for the research is paid. And I think every country near my country did the same way”. I smiled awkwardly. And said to him that sometimes researcher in my country got the money from the industry or company. “Oh yes, of course”, he added.
“Ah, I think I know why”, suddenly he talked again.
“Maybe it is because your government still struggling with the economy stuffs”, he added.
I confirmed that to myself. Yeah, maybe that is ‘the’ big problem about my country. Economy. For the unstable economic problems, the education and research stuffs will still in the umpteenth number of priorities.
Being with them at that moment was an unbelievable event for me. They were so casual and talked like they couldn’t stop. So humble. That conference full with down-to-earth people. I simply like them.
After conference, I met my friend, Kiki. We had dinner together. She asked about the conference. I told her everything that professor said. She replied, “that is the reality that we have to face it. Overseas, the researchers were paid very high. Could reach 80 million rupiahs per month. But they also have heavy obligations. They are obliged to produce regular publications to scientific journals and also produced patents. That is why ‘David’s case’ appeared. It maybe turned out that his professor wanted to make David research as his patent”.
My eyes widened when I heard ’80 million rupiahs’. Is it that big? Abroad, the standard of living of the researchers are concerned. Even countries are competing to win the largest number of patents. I suddenly remember about policy issued by DIKTI about the necessity to send paper into scientific journal as a requirement for graduation. Sounds non sense. Research is expensive. Everyone knows that! Well, except our government I guess.
So, me? As a junior researcher? How can I live in Indonesia, then? If I choose a way to be a researcher, I doubt that. Well, let’s see what I’ve become in the next 5 years. Me wants to be happy, inspiring, and successful young lady.