Singapore in the Global System: Relationship, Structure and Change

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Taylor & Francis, Dec 21, 2007 - History - 277 pages

This book tracks the phases of Singapore’s economic and political development, arguing that its success was always dependent upon the territories links with the surrounding region and the wider global system, and suggests that managing these links today will be the key to the country’s future. Singapore has followed a distinctive historical development trajectory. It was one of a number of cities which provided bases for the expansion of the British empire in the East. But the Pacific War provided local elites with their chance to secure independence. In Singapore the elite disciplined and mobilized their population and built successfully on their colonial inheritance. Today, the city-state prospers in the context of its regional and global networks, and sustaining and nurturing these are the keys to its future. But there are clouds on the elite’s horizons; domestically, the population is restive with inequality, migration and surplus-repression causing concern; and internationally, the strategy of constructing a business-hub economy is being widely copied and both Hong Kong and Shanghai are significant competitors. This book discusses these issues and argues that although success is likely to characterize Singapore’s future, the elite will have to address these significant domestic and international problems.

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Contents

Complex change
12
Impact and reply
40
General crisis
58
New trajectories
79
Locating Singapore
100
Singapore Boat Quay
145
Singapore Yishun North Point Shopping Centre
146
Singapore Holland Avenue
147
Hong Kong Argyle Street Kowloon
168
Hong Kong Shatin Village New Territories
169
Hong Kong Shatin New Town New Territories
170
Hong Kong Ma On Shan New Territories
171
Hong Kong Tolo Harbour New Territories
172
Bangkok downtown skyline
183
Bangkok Ramkamhaeng informal housing area
184
Bangkok Ramkamhaeng Road
185

Singapore upgraded apartment blocks Holland Avenue
148
Singapore hawker centre Yishun
149
Trading cities
160
Bangkok coffee Shop Ramkamhaeng
186
Unfolding trajectories
197
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Peter Preston is a member of the Department of Government and Public Administration of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research interests revolve around the issue of complex change which he has pursued in the contexts of Third World development theory, questions of English identity and the political economy of change in East Asia. His recent publications include: Understanding Modern Japan: A Political Economy of Development, Culture and Global Power (2000); Political Change in East Asia (2003); and Relocating England: Englishness in the New Europe (2004).