Infrastructure Research 2014-2018

The Australia Indonesia Centre Infrastructure Cluster investigated the built, political, social and natural environments of Indonesia’s ports and transport networks. Its research will help ensure that the many large-scale maritime and land transport infrastructure projects in the pipeline will be resilient, efficient, and able to support the massive economic growth Indonesia is experiencing.

Led by a team of experts from Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Monash University and the University of Melbourne, the Cluster worked with stakeholders including port and railway authorities in Australia and Indonesia, engineers, policy makers, and experts in private industry.

The Cluster’s central theme was ‘building sustainable and resilient portal cities‘. It produced research that can assist in the integrated development of port cities, in establishing resilient and efficient intermodal transport to and from ports, and in addressing social and environmental demands in areas of rapid development. It also contributed to an evidence base enabling effective infrastructure governance and policy, and generated fundamental questions for the next phase of research.

Within the central objective, the Infrastructure Cluster focused on three themes:

  • ‘There and back again: improving transport and connectivity’ – One project saw the development of software that tracks the flow of goods around Indonesia to identify inefficiencies and suggest better routes. Another developed a model for predicting how different train carriages will respond to different track conditions, and when maintenance is necessary.
  • ‘Infrastructure policy and processes’ – This included a comparative study of financing decisions and barriers to investment in port infrastructure projects in Australia and Indonesia. The Port competitiveness and financing workshop in Melbourne in April 2018 allowed researchers to discuss their work with the CEOs of Australia and Indonesia’s largest ports, as well as government, engineers and other consultants
  • ‘Technological advancement to asset management’ – Researchers developed, among other tools, a non-destructive testing method for evaluating degradation in concrete structures. To more easily monitor large and long structures, the Cluster also developed optic fibre sensing that reads the stresses in concrete across hundreds of kilometres in real time.


Figure 1 Infrastructure Cluster Key Achievements

Key achievements

  • Developing a fibre-optic sensor for pipeline monitoring, predictive models of train dynamics and bridge life-expectancy, a hybrid framework for the non-destructive testing of infrastructure, a dataset of container logistics in Indonesia, and container logistics simulation software.
  • Producing 16 refereed publications, with many more in the pipeline.
  • Hosting a special session on infrastructure modelling at the 6th Asia Pacific Workshop on Structural Health Monitoring in Hobart, Tasmania, 7-9 December 2016.
  • Delivering an end-of-research workshop in Surabaya to showcase outcomes from the research program in May 2018. This workshop was attended by representatives of the Indonesian Government, The Indonesian Railway Company, Regional Water Company, Indonesian Transport Offices from both national and regional level, Port Authorities from East Javanese ports of Teluk Lamong and Surabaya, as well as road transport and railway industry representatives.
  • Supporting exchange visits of Indonesian students to Melbourne and Australian students to Indonesia, as well as providing many professional development opportunities for researchers.
  • Fostering research relationships that will extend beyond the life of the AIC Infrastructure Cluster. Notable connections include the good working relationship between the Institute of Rail Technology at Monash University and the Jakarta MRT, and the collaborative research work on fibre optics between Monash University and the Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember (ITS) Surabaya.
  • Emphasising the central role of stakeholders and end-users. Stakeholders outside the university sector included port and railway authorities in Australia and Indonesia, engineers, policy makers, and experts in private industry. Key stakeholders were engaged throughout to facilitate and develop relationships around data sharing. Notable relationships were established with PT Teluk Lamong, PT Jasamarga Surabaya Mojokerto, Pelindo III and Jakarta MRT.

Cluster outputs

Conference brochure

Journal articles

  • Al Daghlas, H., Hui, F. K. P., Duffield C. (Forthcoming). The importance of environmental sustainability to obtain finance for port developments in Australia and Indonesia. Australasian Universities Building Education Association (AUBEA) conference proceedings, Singapore, 2018.
  • Hui, F. K. P., Duffield, C., Wahyuni, S., Parikesit, D., Wilson, S. (Forthcoming). Collaborative international industry-university research training in infrastructure projects: an Australian-Indonesian case study. Australasian Universities Building Education Association (AUBEA) conference proceedings, Singapore, 2018.