Beyond path dependency : Analysing Indonesia's social policy responses to two crises

Tauchid Komara YUDA*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This article sets out a coherent framework for debates and discussions on social policy changes during crisis periods. Using Indonesia as a case, this article compares its social policy responses to the 1997–1998 economic crisis and the current COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Both two crises and their responses, once analysed, lead to an argument that path dependence does not always dominate policy processes, as most literature claims, but rather it operates alongside other path-creation-related processes, such as path-clearing policy accelerators and path-creation policy accelerators. This article also presents that ‘old player’ penetration in policy processes does not necessarily preclude alternatives and, in some examined cases, it, instead, strengthens impulses toward substantial reforms. Therefore, revised policies must be viewed as political vehicles for seeking popular support and power reconsolidation as democracy allows. Furthermore, this current analysis contributes to enhancing our understanding of crises, often seen as issues in public policy literature, yet less explored in terms of their importance as unique critical junctures and their implications for social policy changes in multiple paths.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)727-743
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Policy & Administration
Issue number5
Early online date21 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
I acknowledge a debt to Professor Stefan Kühner, Department of Sociology & Social Policy, Lingnan University, with whom I have collaborated on themes closely related to those raised in this article. My thanks also go to the Department of Social Development & Welfare, Universitas Gadjah Mada and Prakarsa, for facilitating access to the interviewee. Last, but not least, I also thank the editor and three anonymous referees who read this article for their constructive criticism. The author is solely responsible for all arguments presented in this article.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • Asian economic crisis
  • COVID-19
  • path creation
  • path dependence
  • policy change
  • social policy


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