Edwin joined the Asia Institute as Lecturer in Indonesian Studies in July 2012. He is also Visiting Fellow of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales, Canberra, where he lectured in Indonesian Studies and Southeast Asian Social Inquiry from 2004 to 2012. He holds a PhD and Master’s degrees in Literature and Indonesian Languages and Cultures from Leiden University, The Netherlands. At Leiden University, he was a postdoctoral fellow in the joint research project Indonesian Mediations (2001-2003) and a postgraduate researcher in the research programme Verbal Art in the Audio-Visual Media of Indonesia (1996-2000). During his undergraduate studies, he also studied at the Indonesian Institute of Arts (ISI), Yogyakarta (1994-95), and Universitas Andalas (1992), Padang. He is currently a member of the editorial board of Antropologi Indonesia (Indonesian Journal of Social and Cultural Anthropology), Universitas Indonesia, Jakarta.
Edwin’s main research, teaching and postgraduate supervision skills and interests are in media and art, specifically regarding Southeast Asia. He has a special interest in media ecology, or the study of the complex interactions between people and their communication and information environments. His research projects deal predominantly with media and art genres that critically analyse and seek to provide creative alternatives to the mainstream media.
His current research project focuses on avant-garde artists and grassroots communities in Indonesia using video and other audio-visual media for the creative and critical reflection on or expression of pressing contemporary issues such as media literacy, television ownership and content, urban space, local history, and gender and body perceptions. The project is to result in a monograph and several articles. Edwin is also co-editor of a book on disaster relief in the Asia-Pacific region, to which he will contribute a chapter on the role of video and performance art in disaster preparedness and trauma healing.
Edwin has analysed the role of local radio in Indonesia’s transition to democracy in the late 1990s and early 2000s in his book From monologue to dialogue: radio and reform in Indonesia (KITLV Press, 2009). He is also co-editor of Cosmopatriots: on distant belongings and close encounters (Rodopi, 2007), which focuses on Asian homeland and migrant artists and communities renegotiating the spatial, racial, bodily and sexual dimensions of belonging. His first book, Cultural travel and migrancy: the artistic representation of globalization in the electronic media of West Java (KITLV Press, 2004), examines how musicians and television and radio producers in Bandung, West Java, engage with the cultural dynamics of globalisation by mixing and reinventing local, national and international performing art genres.