IO, Malang – Economic disparity between regions is one of the problems that crops up during the development of a nation. Differing amounts of natural resources and underlying infrastructure naturally cause imbalances between regions. In East Java, the economic imbalances between cities and districts have become very pronounced.
According to the Williamson Index, economic disparity between districts and cities in East Java from 2013 – 2017 have experienced fluctuating trends. Between 2014 – 2015, inequality between the regions increased 1 point. Through researching this inequality, four Universitas Brawijaya students from the Faculty of Economy and Business have won third place in Bank Indonesia’s Campus Knowledge Competition 2018.
The four students, Agus Susanto, Laili Salisti Romdani, Dikau Tonda Pastyo, and Muhammad Ridho Faza, have proposed a way to reduce this inequality. In their research paper titled “Agriculture Industry Digital Inter-Clustering Linkage as an Accelerant to Regional Economic Growth”, the team put forward a solution to the regional inequality through the agricultural industry in East Java. “With digital clustering linkage and business development services websites, farmers can access product prices in various regions of East Java. As a result, farmers can sell their products to other locations at higher prices,” said Laili.
The research, Laili and her team hopes, can be used by the government to evaluate their current policies. “Among the stakeholders involved in this issue are the Ministry of Agriculture, Department of Agriculture, City/Regional Development Planning Agencies, financial policymakers, academics, and the public alongside Bank Indonesia”, she said. The agriculture industry was chosen as most East Java land is used to produce horticultural products.
The Campus Knowledge Competition 2018 is a contest where college students compete with each other by writing scientific papers. The competition was created by the Bank Indonesia Institute in 2016. This year’s theme was “Advancing Regional Economies through Technology” and was participated in by college students throughout Indonesia. (UB Public Relations)