Rujak Center for Urban Studies (RCUS) is a think-act tankfounded on May 1st, 2010 to assist the necessary transition process into ecological age. RCUS wishes to work together with communities to generate innovative knowledge and practices to form sustainable cities and regions.

By sustainability RCUS means not only surviving climate change and other ecological disasters, but also solving other urban problems that have predated our awareness about ecological issues. Nevertheless, we do believe that the awareness about ecology and new production of knowledge that it has sparked have created a new perspective and opportunities for conceptualising our actions differently to solve those other outstanding urban problems such as poverty, justice, equity, pluralism, inclusivity, etc. Indeed, they make possible a new way of forming cities. However, it is also realised that much more new research and knowledge are needed to change many things.

RCUS wishes to focus on cities as human territories that amalgamate most, if not all, of contemporary and future human problems. In 2007 the world has passed the irreversible 50% urbanisation rate, due mostly to the highest rates in cities of developing countries. RCUS also looks at cities as inseparable to regions with all, different rates of urbanisation. RCUS is looking out to the whole South  East Asia and beyond, while based firmly in Indonesia.

RCUS is shaped by the different experiences and backgrounds of its co-founders who have been doing a multitude of research, capacity building and policy advocacy in more than three decades. They have some professional working experiences in the fields of good governance, arts and culture, heritage, development strategy, and post-disaster reconstruction.

As we learn also by doing we realise that changes require designed steps, bigger magnitude and collaboration, long-term commitments, perseverance, and hence serious organising. We wish to combine research, capacity building and policy advocacy to make our efforts more effective.

We look forward to collaborating creatively with as many partners as possible.

Our Values

  • Diversity and Equity

Cities of today, especially in Southeast Asia, are more diverse than ever before. Migration, socio-economic inequalities, historical and cultural layers, spatial fragmentation and a diverse identities and lifestyles are all the contributing factors. RCUS are committed to embrace diversity and strive for equity, to examine how cities can benefit from diversity and achieve equity. 

  • Multi-method: Interdisciplinary & Inclusive

RCUS believes in multi-method, interdisciplinary and inclusive research and project approaches, as it draws on studies and methodological expertise in the fields of geography, anthropology, urban planning, economics, sociology, history and arts.

RCUS collaborative tools not only allow for diversity of partners to be involved in different phases of activities, but also helps to disseminate the impact of knowledge practices co-produced at different layers.

  • Co-production of knowledge

RCUS is committed in co-production of knowledge and we believed that it will lead to inclusive policy-making process. The strategy is to connect citizens’ everyday knowledge, urban practices, with policy-making process and public sharing tools and spheres. Urban practices are here meant to loosely cover a wide range of all practices related to shaping or urban life.


We are focusing in the cities, especially with crowded and unbalanced environment system in the city, while you ask or join us to develop and building the balanced and great environment.