Global Health alumnus Fadjar ensures public safety via super app

Name: Fadjar Wibowo
Based: Jakarta, Indonesia
Degree: Master's in Global Health, 2015
Current role: Head of Platform Safety and Quality – Grab, South Asia's leading super app.

Fadjar Wibowo

How did you decide to study at KI?

From the beginning, I was so sure I wanted to study a Master's in Global Health at KI for at least two reasons. The first reason is the reputation of KI, particulary since the late Hans Rosling played a huge role in global health education. Second, Sweden is one of few countries that has achieved generous universal healthcare and and a long-term social care system, hence allowing its industry to advance. When I moved to Stockholm, I had just completed my training as a medical doctor in Indonesia, which was financed by my part-time work in phone-credit wholesale and Information and Communication Technology (ICT) marketing. Throughout medical school, I had also worked extensively for different public health research projects including those in the field of public health ICT. This intertwined experience - the passion to work with data and my entrepreneurial aptitude - led me to Sweden, where its data and technology-supported social safety net helps businesses feel safe to take risks and hence to thrive.

What does your typical day look like?

I am the Head of Platform Safety and Quality at Grab, South Asia's leading super App. With the mandate to ensure a high safety and quality standard for Grab services, my team and I support the organization across multiple geographies and business units. We plan, execute and enforce policies and standards to ensure the safety of all users. Through continual development and innovation to the business processes, policies and products, we are responsible for all safety-related aspects of the platform. Our responsibilities can include: preventing road traffic accidents and its financial protection scheme, predicting and minimizing the effect of flooding, detecting and preventing food contamination, to even diagnosing and preventing potential sexual assault.

What I feel is most exciting about our work is the data-driven culture. We apply big data to inform our decision-making in all aspect of our business processes improvement, policies development and products innovation. I’m grateful to be able to employ expertise and perspectives I gained during my studies at KI including public health, social aspect of medicine, epidemiology, health economics, behavioural science, environmental sciences and anthropology, among others.

How has your KI education helped you?

Taking the Master's in Global Health in Sweden has equipped me with strong research and data management skills, as well as broad knowledge of the overarching healthcare systems worldwide. The program’s reputation also helped me to seamlessly expand my network and engage with high level individuals within this ecosystem. Most importantly, my exposure to the leading global health and social protection experts and practitioners at KI changed my view of the world, especially how I identify challenges and face opportunities within the area of global health and any other area closely related to it.

What are your future aspirations?

When I look back, I remember when the struggles I faced to finance my education after high school through selling drinks and snacks, while at the same time trying to win scholarships. My father passed away when I was 15, and social protection and adequate family support were absent. Today, I so am grateful to be where I am and doing what I’m working on now. In the future, I’m looking forward to solving more health and social care system problems through data-driven decision making, I’m always up to challenges and opportunities where my contribution to health care and social care system advancement is deemed valuable, especially over wider geographies, be it regional or continental. The larger impact I could serve, the stronger the drive I have to materialize it.

What is your advice to students?

While keeping your eyes open to new learning curves and networking, do mindfully embrace your strengths and weaknesses. That way, you’ll be able to identify your short- and long-term goals early, hence allowing you to wisely allocate energy to stay focused and get the best out of your Master's program.