The role and function of the museum in strengthening teaching and research are strategic and lie at the heart of UIII as an international higher education institution.
The UIII’s museum are designed to preserve intellectual works written by Muslim scholars, many of whom remain unknown as their works are scattered across the archipelago. Old manuscripts addressing key aspects of life have not been codified properly. Some are stored in knowledge institutions in various locations. These collections are lucky to be well-preserved, even though the institutions holding them are located in different countries. The University of Leiden, Cornell, Ohio, and the Australian National University (ANU) are higher education institutions that hold many Indonesian manuscripts. Within Indonesia, some religious manuscripts are stored in libraries, such as in the Baitul Qur’an, National Museum, and Radya Pustaka in Surakarta. Many more are in individual possession as family heirlooms or community heritage.
As with manuscripts written by intellectuals, other non-written works are also scattered in many placed and remain undiscovered. These works may be in even worse conditions than written works because of the diverse types of material culture. For example, works of art related to religious rituals. Produced by numerous tribes and religious affiliations, these works exhibit incredible variety. Among them are songs of praise, calligraphy, mosque and praying room architecture, worship attire, and prayer accessories like prayer beads, prayer mats, and skullcaps. The Aceh, Malay, Minang, Sunda, Banjar, and Lombok communities, as well as tribes in Kalimantan, Sulawesi, and Maluku, have all developed different works. These invaluable riches have not received serious attention, as there is no institution that specifically collects, studies, and disseminates information on works of art related to religious rituals.