CHANGES IN SINGAPORE POLITICAL ECONOMY
2011/2012, Semester 1
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (Lee Kuan Yew School Of Public Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
An overview of opportunities taken and strengths obtained in the changes of the political economy of Singapore. It will cover Singapore as an East India Company to its status as a Straits Settlements coony and then as a colony by itself, full internal self-government, merger with Malaysia and now an independent republlic. Topics covered include how the political economy of Singapore coped with changes in the region, new commodities in the mainland, population movements, global ideology, national aspirations, international finance, multinational corporations and economic volatility
A three hour session weekly for 8 weeks followed by student presentations during the remaining four sessionsof three hours weekly.
Friday 12 August
From EIC settlement to British colony: EIC rule in Singapore versus mercantilism
A multiple currency economy: the change to British colonial rule
Friday 19 August The mainland as hinterland (1): British indirect rule
The mainland as hinterland (2): The political economy of direct alongside indirect rule
Friday 26 August
From a transient to a permanent population: the political economy of a migrant society
Singapore as synonan-to: direct Japanese rule and its impact
Friday 2 September Communism, chauvinism and communalism: the political economy of Singapore separation from the mainland
Turning to industrialisation: the political economy of electoral participation
Friday 9 September Socialism That Works: the political economy of responding to electoral mandates
Singapore as an administrative state: where has the politics gone?
Friday 16 September
Singapore as a separate economy: the political economy of the Singapore dollar
Singapore as a globalised city state: global movements of capital and technology
Friday 23 September NO CLASS (mid-term recess)
Friday 30 September Education for nation-building: the political economy of communalism and nationalism
Education for manpower training: the political economy of social engineering
Friday 7 October
Economic recessions: the political economy of global economic instability
Economic inequallity: globalising state, disappearing nation?
Friday 14 October Presentation of papers on topic 1
Presentation of papers on topic 2
Friday 21 October
Presentation of papers on topic 3
Presentation of papers on topic 4
Friday 28 October Presentation of papers on topic 5
Presentation of papers on topic 6
Friday 4 November
Presentation of papers on topic 7
Presentation of papers on topic 8
Final Exam 25 Nov. SR 3-1
9-11 am (open book)
This is a course on the history of Singapore seen from the perspective of political economy. Singapore went through different forms of governance in the last two centuries.
The longest period was as part of the colony of the Straits Settlements from 1867 to 1945, in the Colonial Office of the British government.
The shortest period was as a component state of the Federation of Malaysia in 1963 to 1965. She separated from Malaysia in 1965 and became a republic which she is today.
Modern Singapore began as a trading outpost of the East India Company in 1819 and later became, from 1826 to 1858, part of the presidency of Madras of the East India Company (EIC).
When the EIC closed down in 1858, she became part of the India Office of the British government.
These different forms of governance enabled her economy to grow as the centre of British influence in Southeast Asia.
Though she has been a republic with a democratic form of government in 1965, there has been an internal transformation to becoming an administrative state which she is largely today.
History in this course has been viewed through the lens of the different forms of governance Singapore had, with a focus on the economic issues which emerged during each form of governance.
In Singapore's first period of governance as a settlement of the EIC, the economic issue was that of free trade vs mercantilism. In the second period of governance, as part of the India Office and then as part of the colony of straits settlements under the Colonial Office, the economic issue was that of multiple currencies. These two issues are handled in the first session on Friday 15 August.
During the second period of governance as part of the Colony of the Straits Settlements, Singapore adjoined the Malay states which were opened up to tin mining and rubber cultivation. This had significant economic implications for Singapore. This is dealt with inthe second session on Friday 22 August.
The second period was succeeded by a third period of governance when the Japanese occupied Singapore in 1942-45. During these two periods, Singapore saw a massive increase in population which became increasingly settled. This had economic implications which are dealt with in the third session on Friday 29 August.
The settled population had to struggle with communist ideology which became global after WW II, chauvinism because of the separation of races by the British and communalism because these races sought to have power in the wake of the rise of nationalism. The economic implications of these developments are covered in the fourth session on Friday 2 September.
With full internal self-government came a electoral mandate in a fourth period of governance from 1959 to 1963. New institutions were set up whose economic impact is covered in the fifth session on Friday 9 September.
With separation from Malaysia in 1965 came a fifth period of governance which saw economic changes in the form of the issue of a Singapore dollar and Singapore going global. These are examined in the sixth session on F riday 16 September.
During the fourth period of governance, education was reformed and during the fifth period of governance, education became manpower training. The economic implications of these are traced out in the seventh session on Friday 30 September.
During the last and present period of governance as an independent republic, Singapore has sought to be globally significant. The economic implications of being a globalised state are traced out in the last session on Friday 7 October.
Each student has to write two essays. The essay topics to be chosen will be ballotted by the student during the lst session on Friday 15 August and are revealed on that date.
Each essay should be between 1,500-2,500 words. A reading list for each topic will be given, but students are free to obtain additional readings, such as from the internet, wikipedia, etc.
The essays written should be uploaded into the workbin of the IVLE for this course at least forty eight hours before their presentation during class, so that they can be marked and returned during class.
Essay presentations are compulsory and account for 1/4 of the grade given. The weightage of each essay is 20%. The presentation during class is in ppt mode but can also be on the whiteboard and should last for about 10 minutes. Presentations start in the 8th week on Friday 14 October when they will be on topics 1 & 2. Those on Friday 21 October are on topics 3 & 4, Friday 28 October on topics 5 & 6 and those on Friday 4 November (the last class) on topics 7 & 8. Presentations should also be uploaded into the workbin, at least 24 hours before the class itself, so that others can view them.
The final exam weightage if 60%. It is open-book and any three out of five questions have to be answered within two hours.