Singapore Chronicles

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Singapore’s independence, the Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press jointly launched the Singapore Chronicles series in 2015.

This 50-volume series seeks to record, explain and offer insights into what makes Singapore, Singapore. Covering a wide range of subjects, from the philosophical to the mundane, the fundamental to the practical, the Singapore Chronicles titles include Constitution, Presidency, Housing, Transport, Demography, Central Provident Fund, Sports and Food.

Each volume in the series is designed as a primer on the subject, focusing on its essential aspects and giving a historical perspective. The authors are subject experts from the public sector, academia and journalism. Readers will gain an insight into what makes Singapore tick and also why it has chosen certain “paths un-trodden”.

35 volumes have been published and the rest will be published over the course of 2018.  Buy the books at www.stpressbooks.com.sg

  1. Singapore Chronicles – Urban Planning

    Singapore Chronicles – Urban Planning
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Heng Chye Kiang, Yeo Su-Jan
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles — Urban Planning
    Excerpt:

    Singapore is a modern and global island-state, internationally recognised as one of the most liveable cities in the world. Since its Independence, Singapore’s journey towards its present-day urban landscape has been characterised by the political will to tackle pressing priorities together with bold professional initiatives in land planning. This book examines the significant role that land planning plays in Singapore’s physical transformation and economic development, while exploring future challenges in the light of demographic changes, technological advances and environmental pressures. These complexities will require more flexible and innovative land-use policies and strategies to shape Singapore in the next 50 years.

  2. Singapore Chronicles – Sports

    Singapore Chronicles – Sports
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Godfrey Robert
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles — Sports
    Excerpt:

    In 2016, Singapore’s long-awaited dream of winning an Olympic gold medal was realised when Joseph Schooling touched the wall first in the 100m butterfly event. This quest for sporting glory was in stark contrast to the earlier mindset of using sports to produce fit and productive workers for a nascent economy. This primer charts the development of sports in Singapore, from colonial days when playing football, cricket and hockey was an amateur pastime to the current emphasis on professionalism and commercialism. But ultimately, sports are about the stories of the sportsmen and sportswomen whose passion, dedication, struggles and accomplishments move a nation.

  3. Singapore Chronicles – Policing

    Singapore Chronicles – Policing
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Asad Latif
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Policing
    Excerpt:

    Singapore is simultaneously praised for its extraordinary safety and criticised for its draconian laws. This primer seeks to explain Singapore’s achievements in creating a law-abiding society by making public peace and well-being as well as security of life, limb and property a centrepiece of the good life. To that end, tough laws exist against crimes such as murder, narcotics, corruption, commercial crime and cybercrime. This book also examines the role played by the prison system, internal security laws and border security in the state’s overall approach to preserving a peaceful and secure nation.

  4. Singapore Chronicles – Flora and Fauna

    Singapore Chronicles – Flora and Fauna
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Wilson Wong
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Flora and Fauna
    Excerpt:

    The term “flora and fauna” refers to the plants and animals found in a particular region. Singapore’s primeval vegetation has changed vastly over the past 200 years due to a range of human activities. Yet, Singapore is rich in plant and animal life – as found in various terrestrial, coastal and marine ecosystems. This book introduces some of the interesting and notable native plants and animals, in addition to highlighting the physical characteristics of each ecosystem and revealing the challenges that plants and animals need to overcome in order to survive. Readers will also get to know what Singapore has done to conserve its unique and precious natural heritage.

  5. Singapore Chronicles – Finance

    Singapore Chronicles – Finance
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Ignatius Low
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Finance
    Excerpt:

    Singapore is one of the premier financial centres in the world. It is one of the biggest markets for the trading of foreign exchange and financial derivatives, and home to hundreds of global financial institutions, from banks and insurers to oil traders and hedge fund managers. This book traces the development of Singapore’s financial sector from its early supporting role in a thriving British colonial trading outpost to its rapid expansion after the nation’s Independence in 1965.  It is the story of how policymakers here managed to maintain a reputation for regulation and supervision of a high standard, and yet take risks to innovate boldly and seize global opportunities when they arose.

  6. Singapore Chronicles – Japanese Occupation

    Singapore Chronicles – Japanese Occupation
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Leon Comber
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Japanese Occupation
    Excerpt:

    This is a short account of the Japanese Occupation of Singapore, which lasted from February 1942 to August 1945. Those tumultuous days are largely forgotten nowadays, especially by the younger generation, but they were a time of living dangerously. As this account brings out, life and death were often not more than a hair’s breadth apart, and Singaporeans had to fight for their very survival and existence. If any good came from those years, it was that Japan’s defeat of British colonial rule led to the realisation that Singaporeans could stand on their own feet, which led to the eventual establishment of the Republic of Singapore.

     

  7. Singapore Chronicles – Malays

    Singapore Chronicles – Malays
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Noor Aisha Abdul Rahman, Azhar Ibrahim
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Malays
    Excerpt:

    The vicissitudes of history, from Raffles’ purchase of the Singapore island from a Malay sultan to the short-lived merger with Malaya, have left a lasting mark on the Malays of Singapore. This book offers a glimpse of the community as it adapted to its minority status and responded to the myriad challenges of historical, social and political changes. Unlike among the Chinese and the Indians, there is much cohesiveness within the community as most speak Malay and practise Islam. Yet, like the other communities, it struggles to retain its culture, tradition and values against the onslaught of urbanization and Westernisation. With a focus on Malay leadership, education, religion, Syariah laws, language and literary tradition, this book evaluates how these aspects have evolved over the decades. Problems pertaining to the community’s socio-economic progress and future challenges are also discussed. This primer is an introduction to one of Singapore’s small yet resilient and remarkable communities.

  8. Singapore Chronicles – Pre-Colonial Singapore

    Singapore Chronicles – Pre-Colonial Singapore
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Kwa Chong Guan
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Pre-Colonial Singapore
    Excerpt:

    The conventional and dominant view of Singapore’s history is that it began with the arrival of Stamford Raffles on the island in January 1819, and that nothing of significance happened on this island before that. This book attempts a re-examination of a more comprehensive collection of evidence, including excavated archaeological evidence and Portuguese and Dutch archival records, to argue that there were significant developments on and around the island. They shaped Singapore’s historical development after 1819 and could alter our understanding of what Singapore is about in history.

  9. Singapore Chronicles – Religion

    Singapore Chronicles – Religion
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Lai Ah Eng
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Religion
    Excerpt:

    Singapore is one of the most religiously diverse countries in the world. This feature gives multiple layers and combinations of richness, hybridity, complexity and fluidity to its landscape of religious communities, orientations and interactions. This book provides an overview of Singapore’s religious diversity and focuses on some of its contemporary complexities. While recognising the positive – vibrancy and richness in religious diversity – it highlights problems and challenges posed by some religious trends and developments. The book foregrounds three religious/faith traditions and orientations – Islam, Christianity and secularism – which have become significant in recent times. It highlights some challenges of growing religiosity and religious diversity, assesses how they can be expected to evolve in the near future, and discusses how they might be navigated.

  10. Singapore Chronicles – Trade Unions

    Singapore Chronicles – Trade Unions
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Ivan L Fernandez
    Year:
    2017
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles – Trade Unions
    Excerpt:

    Trade unions hold a special place in the history of the city-state. Occupying different camps on the left and right, past unionists’ struggles for social justice saw the rise of leaders who could move the masses. Here is a dispassionate look at the ideas and impulses of those who have defined today’s labour movement. But what of tomorrow? Can unions in general continue to play a key role as jobs everywhere are threatened by technological change and disruption? Some observers think Singapore might have an answer. This book dissects the issues.

  11. Singapore Chronicles - Central Provident Fund

    Singapore Chronicles - Central Provident Fund
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Chia Ngee Choon
    Year:
    2016
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles — Central Provident Fund
    Excerpt:

    The Central Provident Fund (CPF), Singapore’s mandatory savings scheme, has evolved since its inception in 1953 to meet Singaporeans’ housing, investment and retirement aspirations. The CPF’s trajectory reflects Singapore’s economic and social development. Its intricate connection with housing financing has made the CPF a unique social innovation in the world.

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  12. Singapore Chronicles - Civil Society

    Singapore Chronicles - Civil Society
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Gillian Koh and Debbie Soon
    Year:
    2016
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles - Civil Society
    Excerpt:

    Singapore’s political system is often characterised as an activist state dominated by one political party, the People’s Action Party. This book adds nuances to that picture by tracing the history of civil society in Singapore; the interaction and contestation between ground-up political and social movements on the one hand, with the state and government on the other. It discusses the legal and working principles that shape how civil society operates today after 50 years of Independence, and its interaction with the state.

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  13. Singapore Chronicles - Demography

    Singapore Chronicles - Demography
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Yap Mui Teng and Christopher Gee
    Year:
    2016
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles - Demography
    Excerpt:

    Singapore’s population is a veritable mix of nationalities, ethnic groups, languages and religious affiliations. This book traces trends and developments in Singapore’s population from the pre-Independence period, when there was relatively little control over migration and fertility; through the period of population control from Independence to the 1980s; to the more expansionary years from the mid-1980s until recently.

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  14. Singapore Chronicles - Emergency

    Singapore Chronicles - Emergency
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Kumar Ramakrishna
    Year:
    2016
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles - Emergency
    Excerpt:

    This book examines the origins of the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) in the inter-war years and its subsequent development against the wider backdrop of the Cold War. The CPM, in its quest to set up a Communist Republic of Malaya and Singapore, mounted a violent rural insurgency in Malaya and later shifted to urban subversion of the bourgeoning anti-colonial left-wing movement in Singapore. Contemporary Singapore’s emphasis on law and order cannot be understood without reference to its long twilight struggle with the CPM, a conflict that ended only in 1989.

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  15. Singapore Chronicles - Energy

    Singapore Chronicles - Energy
    Publisher:
    Institute of Policy Studies and Straits Times Press
    Author/s:
    Tilak K Doshi and Lin Fangjun
    Year:
    2016
    Publication:
    Singapore Chronicles - Energy
    Excerpt:

    How did Singapore emerge as the “East of Suez” hub for oil refining, petrochemicals manufacturing and trading in the early 1980s? This book examines the development of Singapore’s oil industry since 1870. Critical policy issues facing government planners in energy security, energy efficiency and environmental sustainability are also discussed to inform the reader of the key issues related to the story of oil in Singapore.

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