A Short Profile of Pramudya A. Oktavinanda

An Indonesian capitalist lawyer with PhD in Law & Economics and Islamic Law from University of Chicago Law School, an avid reader, a devoted gamer, a sushi lover, a part time traveler, and a day dreamer. 

I obtained my undergraduate degree in law (SH) from the Faculty of Law, University of Indonesia focusing on Business Law, Procedural Law and Islamic Law, and was named as its Best Outstanding Student in 2004. I later received my master degree in law (LLM) from the University of Chicago Law School in 2012, concentrating on Law & Economics and Corporate & Securities Laws, and then my Doctor of Jurisprudence degree (PhD) from the same university in 2018 under the supervision of Prof. Anup Malani and Prof. Tom Ginsburg. My dissertation titled "Interpreting Immutable Legal Texts: The Posnerian Pragmatism of Islamic Law" discusses the inherent pragmatism and consequentialist way of thinking embedded in the Shari'a and how they affect the interpretation of Shari'a provisions under the assumption that it is a perfect law.

I currently serve as the Managing Partner of UMBRA-Strategic Legal Solutions, a full service law firm located in Jakarta, Indonesia. In a career spanning over 13 years, I have represented major governmental, local and international clients in some of the largest and most sophisticated national and cross border transactions consisting of public offerings of equity and debt securities (covering local and international offerings under Rule 144A/Reg S of the US Securities Act of 1933), private placements, mergers & acquisitions of public and private corporations, joint ventures, corporate, debt & pre-IPO restructuring, financial engineering, Islamic financing, and EPC & O&M contracts drafting and negotiation.

My core industry areas include telecommunication, broadcasting, digital technology, data analytics, power, renewables, infrastructure, and state-owned enterprises. I was listed in the 2014 edition of Legal 500 as “proven to be capable and helpful” and is one of the youngest lawyers to be recognized in the Asian Business Law Journal 2018’s A-List of Top 100 Indonesian Lawyers.     

My main academic interest is the application of economic analysis in the following areas of law: long term contracts, complex dispute settlement, white-collar criminal activities, corporate law (with special emphasis on joint venture and M&A transactions), Islamic law & finance, and legal interpretation. I am also interested with public choice, namely, the application of economic, game theory, and political science analysis in understanding how legislators, judges and government behave within a legal system, including in promulgating new laws and interpreting existing regulations.  

On economic system, I believe that capitalism with its free market concept is currently the best economic system which would enable the society to gain the most optimal prosperity and welfare. It's not the perfect system, but until someone can show me a better economic system, I will stick with capitalism. Hence, the reason why I call myself the Capitalist Lawyer.

On legal philosophy, I consider myself as a legal positivist. I view law as a social fact whose existence primarily depends on the society's acceptance and I see no good reason why the validity of a law should depend on the moral values contained in such law.  However, it does not mean that a law cannot contain any moral values nor that a law cannot pursue certain policies goal such as the idea of efficiency and welfare maximization described by the Law & Economics school. Hence, what the law should be and what determines the validity of a law are two separate issues.

On being a lawyer, I believe that professionalism, intelligence, tenacity, relationship management, and dedication are the main keys for developing a lawyer's career to the next level, though all of them would be useless without first having a great passion to take the path of a lawyer's life. After all, the profession of lawyer is not an ordinary job, it is essentially a way of life.

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