Case Studies


Results Found

  • Woo Jun Jie
In light of an increasingly digitised and knowledge-based economy, Singapore introduced its Smart Nation initiative. As a policy initiative guiding Singapore’s digital transformation, the Smart Nation initiative relies on several policy tools or ‘enablers’ to achieve a range of economic, social, and urban policy goals. This case study will assess these policy tools and goals, situating them within the context of Singapore’s overall approach to economic development. More than simply a policy initiative, the Smart Nation initiative has also involved public administrative reform. In response to inadequate public interest as well as a perceived lack of pace in Singapore’s digital transformation, a centralised public agency, the Smart Nation and Digital Government Group, was formed to coordinate cross-government digitisation efforts. Singapore’s ongoing transformation into a Smart Nation has therefore involved both policy innovation and a reorganization of public administration processes. However, Singapore also continues to face challenges in its digitisation efforts, such as insufficient private sector participation or ground-up initiatives. 
  • Lim Wei Chieh
In May 2017, Warren Buffet called cyberattacks “the number one problem with mankind”. Cyberattacks are occurring with alarming frequency, sophistication, and scale. The credit reporting company Equifax disclosed in September 2017 that hackers had stolen the personal information of about 143 million United States consumers by exploiting a website vulnerability. Earlier that year, the WannaCry and NotPetya ransomware used a tool stolen from the NSA to attack hundreds of thousands of vulnerable machines and hold them hostage.

These attacks had in common the exploitation of software vulnerabilities by cybercriminals. According to the CERT Coordination Center (CERT/CC) of Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute (SEI), over 90 percent of reported security incidents are the result of exploits against software design or coding defects. Determining the best way to tackle software vulnerabilities is an ongoing challenge. I argue in this policy analysis that a focus on eliminating or reducing software vulnerabilities is a key pillar in the fight against cybercrime, and that engaging the community of independent white hats in this undertaking provides the highest chance of success.
  • Jennifer Dodgson
Crisis communications in the private sector have been widely studied, and various typologies of the ways in which corporations respond to adverse publicity exist. Crisis communications in the public sector have been the object of much less study. While governments use much the same tactical toolbox as private entities when dealing with criticism, the effects have the potential to be far more wide-reaching. The ways in which governments respond to bad publicity can affect not just public perceptions, but also – in the longer term – the nature of the political regime within a state.

This study looks at four cases – the Graduate Mothers Scheme, the Wee Shu Min elitism controversy, the renaming of the Syonan Gallery and the culling of free range neighbourhood poultry – to track the ways in which government responses to criticism have changed over time. These four examples show the Singaporean government moving from a traditional soft-authoritarian position to a deliberative democracy model.
  • Tara Thean
Paper products have enabled significant progress in education, culture, and hygiene at the same time as they have contributed to deteriorating the world's forests, driving species to the brink of extinction, and worsening climate change. The need for pulp and paper companies to consider and mitigate the environmental impacts of their business practices has become increasingly clear. This case study tells the story of a major Indonesian pulp and paper company, Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL), that took several steps to balance the economic and environmental concerns of paper production while taking into account multiple stakeholders, including the Indonesian government, local communities, and consumers.
  • Debbie Loo
Singapore is facing the challenge of rapid demographic ageing. The 2013 Population White Paper highlighted that the proportion of elderly Singaporeans would double from 1 in 8, to 1 in 4 by 2030. Due to constraints of its geographical size, it would be increasingly important for Singapore to address the ageing phenomenon through the triad of healthcare, housing and urban infrastructure. This case study explores the inter-connection between ageing and urban development. It looks at the development of Singapore’s ageing policies in relation to the urban environment. It discusses the policy implementations, gaps, and critiques in housing, accessibility healthcare, and community services. It will pose some questions on the way forward for age-friendly city planning in land-scarce Singapore.
  • Jean Chia
The sharing economy had only started to take off in Singapore in recent years, but had already shaken up certain sectors, with the likes of Uber, Grab and Airbnb making the biggest splashes. These businesses introduced innovations in the business models and technologies that helped to address market inefficiencies and resource under-utilisation. At the same time, they were at odds with existing regulatory frameworks, challenged incumbents, and produced other knock-on effects. This case study discusses the development of sharing economy in Singapore – particularly ride-sharing and home-sharing which were more prevalent – in a for-profit context, and examines how policymakers in Singapore have approached the sectors, and managed the policy considerations.