Case #2010.0

Rebuilding Aceh: Indonesia's BRR Spearheads Post-Tsunami Recovery

Publication Date: April 30, 2014
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The December 26, 2004, Indian Ocean tsunami caused tremendous damage and suffering on several continents, with Indonesia's Aceh Province (located on the far northern tip of Sumatra Island) experiencing the very worst. In the tsunami's wake--and with offers of billions of dollars of aid coming from all corners of the globe--the Indonesian government faced the daunting task of implementing a massive recovery effort that could meet the expectations of donors and survivors alike. With this in mind, Indonesia's president established in April 2005 a national-level, ad hoc agency--known by its acronym, BRR--to coordinate reconstruction activities across the province. This case examines some of the core challenges BRR's leaders encountered as they moved to set up the agency and then proceeded to coordinate and execute a recovery process involving hundreds of domestic and international partner organizations and thousands of independent reconstruction projects.

Learning Objective:
This case explores the management of recovery in post-tsunami Indonesia, prompting students to consider the dilemmas leaders of the national recovery agency, BRR, faced leading up to and following the organization's establishment. In particular, it highlights how BRR coordinated with numerous actors and examines the successes and challenges the agency encountered once it began implementing its own projects.

Other Details

Case Author:
David Giles
Faculty Lead:
Arnold Howitt
Pages (incl. exhibits):
Funding Source:
Harvard Kennedy SchoolÂ’s Indonesia Program, Rajawali Foundation Institute for Asia at the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation