Policy Analysis Research Assistant

The courses I took during my study have provided the background on the science and politics of climate change which is crucial for my current job at the Centre for International Forestry Research in Bogor, Indonesia, says Intan Maya Sari.

Intan Maya Sari

- Describe the most important tasks you have in your job today

- The most important task in my job today is to identify best practices methods to design effective, efficient and equitable ecosystem-based projects that, in addition to mitigation benefits, consider the needs to protect forest-dependent livelihoods from the adversities of climate change. The results of the research will help stakeholders from public, private, non-governmental and community-based agencies to develop forest-related policies and projects that consider the importance of ecosystems in providing multiple benefits to communities (e.g. for poverty reduction and protection of local livelihoods).

The task is done through conducting content analysis of Indonesian national and sub-national policy, regulation, planning, and program documents related to climate change (adaptation, mitigation, agriculture, land-use, forestry, and disaster risk reduction). I am also expected to contribute to the design of research activities and methods related to the analysis of media articles and public discourses on synergies and trade-offs between adaptation and mitigation.

- What do you like most about your job?

- At work, I am surrounded by international and national experts on governance, environment, and livelihoods related to forestry and agriculture. It enables me to continuously develop my capacities and to exchange thoughts and ideas on various issues and projects. Besides, CIFOR headquarter in Bogor, West Java has a great architecture surrounded by beautiful nature and green landscape that takes my mind away from realizing that I actually work adjacent to a remote forest area.

- How is the education from The Faculty of Humanities relevant in this job?

- During my study, I was expected to think critically, independently and to stay focus and objective in order to produce well-researched arguments and analysis. Excellent access to various journals, research software, workshops, and conferences in Oslo had benefited me a lot as an Academic.

Several courses that I took during my study at UiO have provided the background on the Science and Politics of Climate Change which is crucial for my current job as a Policy Analysis Research Assistant. Likewise, the course on Development and Environment’s Theory and Policy Challenges have sharpened my perspective in viewing the battle in sustaining growth while preserving the environment.

Additionally, intensive courses on qualitative and quantitative research methods at SUM have given me relevant knowledge and skills in collecting data on fieldwork, analyzing, and presenting them as an academic work.  

- Your best tip for new students who are thinking about job opportunities after graduation?

- I suppose when Master students graduate, they expect to get a steady job right away because of their education. Well, it is not always the case in real life. Prepare yourself, because at first you might experience difficulties to find a “niche market” for your expertise. The job market these days is loaded with mainstream profit-making industries and companies that are not necessarily pro-environment and sustainable development. Yet, don’t be disheartened by this because jobs related to environment are constantly growing in varieties and numbers.

The most evident tip I could give is to say yes to opportunities large and small, and to never stop looking. Make sure that whatever you are doing, you are learning enough to take you to the next step, and when the opportunity arises, move forward. While you are waiting to find your dream job, you can do an internship or involve in volunteer activities at various organizations. This will be a valuable experience and also make you a determined candidate in front of your future employer. By keeping open and flexible, you may find the way to something you never even expected or dreamed of.

My ideas for relevant jobs encompasses from being an Academic, lecturer, researcher, advisers and also NGO personnel working on the issues of Global Health, Humanitarian Assistance, Energy, Climate Change, Green Economy, Forestry and Livelihoods, and also Community Development for related governmental agencies, organizations and also embassies who support related programs. Additionally, you can also consider a career in Diplomacy and Politics. Lykke til!

By Torunn Nyland, Career and Employability Coordinator HF
Published Mar. 18, 2014 10:10 AM - Last modified Mar. 17, 2017 2:10 PM