This article examines the role of transmigration in the formation of a frontier in the Indonesian province of Sulawesi. The "KTM" (Kawasan Terpadu Mandiri – Integrated and Self-Sustained Settlement) initiative, which is funded by the government, provides the primary context. Using ethnographic methods, we identify the first Bugis migration in Indonesia that was funded by the government. The Bugis who settled in Baras were the only ones for whom the state had any involvement in the planning, sponsorship, or endorsement of their relocation from other locations like Sumatra or Kalimantan. We argue that the KTM of Baras has evolved from an agricultural frontier to an economic frontier and, most recently, a frontier focussed on the core issues of political ecology. This focus has arisen because the settlement has taken on the characteristics of an intersection of various types of frontiers. Empirically, this intersection of frontier and the oil palm industry have contributed to transforming the north-western region of Sulawesi.
Keywords: Bugis, frontier, transmigration, Baras, West Sulawesi, Indonesia, political ecology
How to Cite:
Mukrimin, M. & Acciaioli, G., (2023) “Frontier formation in an Indonesian resource site”, Journal of Political Ecology 30(1), 274–295. doi: https://doi.org/10.2458/jpe.5673
- Litapdimas Indonesia, Kolaborasi Internasional scheme