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INSIGHTS / THE BIG PICTURE

Insights on tech and the Indonesian diaspora in Silicon Valley

Indonesia · Oct 31, 2017 · By Richard Darsono and Karel Luwena

Navigating the different diaspora communities, one tech event at a time

The Big Picture

Many of our friends from back home ask “How is life in the Bay Area?” Or as foreigners usually call them, the ‘Silicon Valley’.

We never have a short answer.

Things happen in the Bay Area all the time. Most of the time it’s about tech. It ranges from product launches like the latest Apple and Google announcements to big corporate drama, or new startup funding rounds from the hottest VCs in town.

Moreover, unless you live or have ever lived here, you would rarely talk about the Indonesian diaspora community in the Bay Area. A quick research shows that there are about 90,000 Indonesian professionals living in the US, about 4 to 5 percent of them live in the Bay Area. And, of course, there are hundreds of Indonesian students in universities across the Bay.

After living in the Bay for about few months, we have learned that the Indonesian community is quite fragmented. There are a lot of small Indonesian communities such as students organizations, religious communities, and professional networking groups. However, there is no umbrella organization that unites all of them.

We understand that the current sub-communities may have different objectives, and serve wide-ranging audiences. However, we feel that there needs to be a connector that brings every group together. Through this article, we want to add some value to the large and fragmented network.

Edited by Bernice Tang

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