Universal Access to Education in Indonesia: Making Disadvantaged Children Count


The government has been implementing several strategies to ensure wider access to education, especially for the poor and disadvantaged groups. One of the programs is the Program Indonesia Pintar (PIP) or Smart Indonesia Program, launched in 2014. PIP was the refinement of the Bantuan Siswa Miskin (BSM) or Cash Transfers for Poor Students program.

Despite PIP’s rapid growth, its implementation still meets with challenges related to the institutional aspect of the program’s governance, benefit, and result. This situation indicates the need to improve the institutional arrangement of PIP implementation, including planning, targeting, costing, distribution mechanism, as well as perception of the program’s utilization and outreach. Therefore, SMERU proposes in-depth and comprehensive research on how effective the PIP implementation is in improving access to education and addressing out-of-school children (OOSC) issues, especially among children from disadvantaged families.

This study will review PIP’s effectiveness in improving access to education and addressing OOSC issues, especially among children from disadvantaged families. Specific objectives of this study are as follows:
  1. To identify issues and challenges hampering the current PIP implementation, including planning, data collection, institutional arrangement, costing, and distribution process and mechanism, as well as the utilization by its beneficiaries
  2. To identify strategies to improve the efficiency and efficacy of PIP implementation

This study uses mixed-method approach, encompassing both qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis. This approach enables the research team to identify the issues and challenges with current PIP implementation and recommend strategies for strengthening the PIP program’s effectiveness and implementation.

The quantitative method will be used to analyze secondary data from the National Socioeconomic Survey (Susenas) 2017–2019 and the Village Census (Podes) 2018, all of which capture information on the profiles of PIP beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries as well as supporting infrastructure.

The qualitative method (in-depth interviews and focus group discussion) will be used to (i) gain a deeper understanding of PIP implementation in ensuring the fulfillment of the right to education service for children from disadvantaged families and (ii) address OOSC issues


Nina Toyamah
Ulfah Alifia
Team Member 
Niken Kusumawardhani
Fauzan Kemal Musthofa
Dyan Widyaningsih
Sylvia Andriyani Kusumandari
Completion Year 
Project Donor 
UNICEF Indonesia
Type of Service

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