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Pre-school education in Singapore

Pre-school education in Singapore

Singapore ranks among the best in global rankings for primary, secondary and tertiary education but lacks behind in early childhood education. In 2012, a study on pre-school education placed Singapore in the 29th spot out of 45 countries, and way behind South Korea (10th) and Hong Kong (19th). Finland, Sweden, and Norway topped the list […]

After Singapore, Can Sizzle Be Replaced With Steak?

After Singapore, Can Sizzle Be Replaced With Steak?

WHAT can face-to-face diplomacy between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un achieve? It is wisest not to expect a revolutionary change in Trump’s approach and instead for him to play to his strengths: ceremony and personal relationships. On substance, the South Korean-led process should be allowed to take the lead […]

Education system in Singapore

Education system in Singapore

This year, Singapore celebrates its bicentennial of its founding in 1819 by Englishman Sir Stamford Raffles who set up the first premier school named after him. Raffles Institution (RI) is the alma mater of many illustrious Singaporeans, including Lee Kuan Yew. Education has moved up the quality ladder since, playing a key role in the […]

Singapore: an upbeat new year’s message

Singapore: an upbeat new year’s message

Singapore prime minister Lee Hsien Loong delivered an upbeat new year’s message. On the political front a younger team is in place to take over the leadership after Lee who plans to step down in 2021. Poised to be the next prime minister is current finance minister Heng Swee Keat. Economically, Singapore has posted a […]

Has Singapore Led to Real Gains on the North Korean Nuclear Question?

Has Singapore Led to Real Gains on the North Korean Nuclear Question?

  The warm feelings of the Singapore summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump in June have given way to the chill of December and the reality of a coming winter. In October and November, North Korea’s state-run news agency, KCNA, published a series of commentaries warning that North Korea might resume testing nuclear […]

After Singapore, Can Sizzle Be Replaced With Steak?

After Singapore, Can Sizzle Be Replaced With Steak?

WHAT can face-to-face diplomacy between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un achieve? It is wisest not to expect a revolutionary change in Trump’s approach and instead for him to play to his strengths: ceremony and personal relationships. On substance, the South Korean-led process should be allowed to take the lead […]

Senior Korean diplomat found unconscious with brain bleed in Singapore

Senior Korean diplomat found unconscious with brain bleed in Singapore

One of South Korean President Moon Jae-in’s key staffers has collapsed with an apparent brain bleed while the president and state executives were in Singapore for this year’s annual ASEAN Summit. Moon broke the news on Friday.  He said Kim Eun-young, the director-general of the South Asia and Pacific Foreign Affairs Bureau, was found unconscious […]

Singapore and Populism

Singapore and Populism

A newspaper columnist who deigned to lecture government ministers for speaking over the head of common folk was, in turn, chided for appealing to populism that is anathema to the ruling People’s Action Party, as it smacks of politics of free lunches. “Ministers, please speak plainly to people” was the thrust of Han Fook Kwang’s […]

The meaning of “jeong”

The meaning of “jeong”

“Coming to Korea as a tourist is vastly different from actually living here.” Some say you can only truly know a country once you’ve passed a tourist’s honeymoon phase. And for Frederic Heng who hails from Singapore, the veil of his first impression of South Korea was gradually lifted over the 4 years he spent […]

Singapore COUNTRY REPORT: Professional Ethics Still a Media Imperative

Singapore COUNTRY REPORT: Professional Ethics Still a Media Imperative

In the internet age, some people brush aside the need for conventional full-time journalists or media organizations to give us our daily news. “That is already passe,” said a former reporter colleague of mine, surprised to hear that Asia Journalist Association (AJA) accept mainly working journalists. “Nowadays, a journalist is anyone who posts online—the bloggers […]

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