Contestation, Conflict, and Crisis in Transition: The Embedding of Ridesharing in Indonesia

Suci Lestari Yuana

Research output: ThesisDoctoral thesis 2 (Research NOT UU / Graduation UU)


This thesis unravels the dynamics of Indonesia's ridesharing industry, shedding light on pivotal aspects shaping urban mobility transitions in the Global South. The primary aim of this thesis is to delve into the emergence of online ridesharing and how this influences the ongoing urban mobility transition. Central to this exploration are the contestation, conflicts, and crises that invariably emerge during this transformative process. To illuminate this intricate interplay, the overarching research question that guides this study is: "How do contestations, conflicts, and crises shape the future of online ridesharing in urban mobility transitions in the Global South?” The research challenges prevailing perspectives on contestation, conflict, and crisis, presenting them not as destabilising factors but as essential mechanisms for self-organisation in societies navigating urban mobility transitions. Exploring media discourse dynamics, the study identifies five frames influencing policy responses. Contrary to Western trends, ridesharing in Indonesia is driven more by commercial and legal considerations than environmental sustainability. The thesis then delves into multidimensional conflict, challenging binary views and incorporating material elements and temporal dimensions in the analysis. It introduces critical moments as units of analysis, offering a nuanced understanding of conflict involving diverse actors, such as conventional taxi drivers, policymakers, and ridesharing entities. Examining future uncertainties, the research highlights diverse perceptions of time horizons and emphasises the role of social interactions in shaping future storylines. Multi-criteria mapping engages participants in envisioning various futures, revealing non-technological aspects' prominence in articulated futures. The thesis further explores the interplay of conflict and crisis, demonstrating the COVID-19 pandemic's role in shaping informal institutions within digital platform transitions. It underscores the significance of informal institutions, emphasising a contextualised approach to transition management in the Global South. Implications for transition research involve a reevaluation of contestation as a catalyst for change, a broader understanding of conflict, and a recognition of the role of crises in revealing informal strategies. Transition governance implications emphasise the importance of informal institutions, a multi-temporal approach to governance, inclusive stakeholder engagement, future-oriented analysis, and context-specific policies.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Utrecht University
  • Raven, Rob, Supervisor
  • Hajer, Maarten, Supervisor
  • Boon, Wouter, Supervisor
  • Sengers, F., Co-supervisor, External person
Award date26 Jun 2024
Print ISBNs978-94-6469-961-6
Publication statusPublished - 26 Jun 2024


  • Digital Platform Innovation
  • Indonesia
  • Ridesharing
  • Urban mobility transitions
  • Conflicts
  • Crises
  • Discourse analysis
  • Framing Analysis
  • Multi criteria mapping
  • Policy responses
  • Transition governance
  • Contestation


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