An Online Interregional Collaborative Inquiry of Indonesian ‘Unity in Diversity’ Principles

Year: 2019

Author: Pheeney, Christine

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Contemporary Indonesian Governance strives for social justice with a directive to animate the National Values – Pancasila - précised as ‘Unity in Diversity’in daily education activities. Current education practices and teacher professional development are described as too abstract and Indonesia’s representative scope is largely absent as a resource within professional development. Application of lateral thinking to context and awareness of prevalent digital collaborative tools inspires research to engage and study an innovative approach to teacher learning. Twenty-three teachers respectfully representative of Indonesia’s diversity were recruited to engage in an Online Interregional Collaborative Inquiry. The inquiry harnesses Pancasila value and cultural heritage of ‘deliberation coming to consensus amongst representatives’ to digital technology facilitating inter-group dialogue, deep interpretive processing and mutual mentoring. This undertaking correlates with Indigenous Knowledge System methods involving reciprocal relational interactions. Simultaneously the approach aligns with contemporary discussion in the field of education describing development of cosmopolitan attitudes and behaviours as through participation in communities of practice facilitating cross cultural mentoring. Doctoral research underway studies teachers negotiating experiences and how these support and/or hinder contemporary interpretation of Pancasila.Progressive analysis framed by a contextualised form of Cultural Historical Activity Theory shows intentional orchestration of diverse connections and discussion with supported unifying focus, contributes to facilitation of classroom activities that animate Pancasila social justice goals. This paper details the innovative teacher professional learning research design that engages cultural ‘unity in diversity’ principles in instigation, recruitment, engagement, analysis and sharing.