Alternative Investment

29 December 2015

The Korean Times

In an article contribution, Associate Professor Shin Jang-sup, Department of Economics, discussed hedge fund as a form of alternative investment among leading institutional investors in Korea, in the face of low interest rates and stagnant stock markets. He noted that the performance of hedge funds on average is not encouraging.

Assoc Prof Shin also opined that alternative investment strategies of Korean institutional investors should be radically re-examined in view of the customers’ assessments of hedge fund returns before it is too late.

To read the full article, click here.

Towards a Greener Future at FASS

As part of NUS 110th Anniversary celebrations and launch of “Celebrating Trees in NUS” programme, a tree-planting ceremony was held in FASS at the green space located outside of LT13 on 29 December 2015.


Prof Brenda Yeoh, Dean of Faculty and Mr Mark Teng, Director (Administration) at the tree-planting ceremony

Despite the slight drizzle, Professor Brenda Yeoh, Dean of the Faculty, along with other members of the Deanery – Prof Lionel Wee, Assoc Prof Loy Hui Chieh, Assoc Prof Ong Chang Woei and Assoc Prof Melvin Yap, Mr Mark Teng, as well as faculty staff and student leaders came together to plant six umbrella trees. Scientifically known as Terminalia Mantaly ‘Tricolor’, the tree is known for its horizontal tiers which grow upwards to form distinct canopies or layers of leaves that look like inverted umbrellas. They are mostly found in tropical regions and commonly cultivated for the deep shade they provide.

The Umbrella Tree, or scientifically known as Terminalia Mantaly ‘Tricolor’.



Goh Bing Xuan Bryan
Other members of the Deanery as well as student leaders gathered as well to plant the Umbrella Trees.

In total, 110 trees were planted at various locations in campus throughout the month of December. The initiative, spearheaded by the NUS Facilities Management (OFM), aims to further enhance green spaces and deepen the appreciation of the University’s lush natural heritage. A booklet featuring memorable trees on campus has also been produced. A PDF version is available here.


Facebook Campaign Draws Blood Donors

21 December 2015

Berita Harian

A study has been done by a group of students from the Department of Communications and New Media to look into the effectiveness of social media in spreading kindness and positive contributions amongst its users. The study was part of a module taught by Assistant Professor Elmie Nekmat.

One of the projects featured was an initiative that distributed necessities such as bread, biscuits and drinks to the homeless. The initiative which drew attention to the plight of the homeless had successfully raised $175.

Another project that was featured was a blood donation campaign conducted via Facebook which was also a collaboration with the National University Hospital.

Singapore’s Housing Policies Addressed at Seminar and Conference Hosted by NAI

The Next Age Institute (NAI) – a joint partnership between NUS Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and Washington University in St. Louis (WUSTL) to study, design and test social innovations – hosted a symposium and seminar at Brookings Institution and WUSTL, Washington D.C., in late 2015.

Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam and two NUS scholars, Assoc Prof Chia Ngee Choon, (Department of Economics) co-director of NAI as well as Assoc Prof Wong Yunn Chii, Head of the Department of Architecture at the NUS School of Design and Environment, were present to offer insights on Singapore’s housing policies.

The “Housing, Inclusion and Social Equity: A Global Perspective” symposium was held on 30 November at Brookings Institution.

At the conference, Mr Tharman delivered a keynote address on Singapore’s housing policies. He highlighted that numerous complementary policies have been essential for maintaining Singapore’s harmony. Among these policies, the centrepiece lies in the country’s neighbourhoods. He said that their composition and the way the neighbourhoods are designed maximised interaction and gave Singapore the best chance of achieving an integrated society.

Experts and speakers from the United Kingdom, India and United States were also invited to offer comparisons and policy insights on housing and social equity. Among them was Assoc Prof Chia who spoke about those policies from Singapore’s perspective.

Assoc Prof Chia and Assoc Prof Wong also presented at the “Housing Policy and Community Stability” seminar held at WUSTL on 2 December.

Both speakers discussed the roles that housing policies played in the well-being of Singaporeans. Singapore’s inclusive policies provided opportunities for home ownership, community integration and stability and economic security. Prof Michael Sherraden served as a respondent while the Dean of Architecture at WUSTL, Bruce Lindsey, moderated the seminar.

A videocast of Mr Tharman’s keynote address and Assoc Prof Chia’s presentation is available here and here respectively.

To watch the videocast of the “Housing Policy and Community Stability” seminar, click here.

Promoting social connections at supermarkets

17 December 2015


In an article contribution, Associate Professor Thang Leng Leng, Head of Department of Japanese Studies and Deputy Director of the Centre for Family and Population Research, noted that supermarkets can play a role in promoting social well-being among the elderly.

An observation she made revealed that neighbourhood supermarkets are often natural nodes for people living nearby to congregate and thus would be a good-fit to co-locate social activity centres or community centres with supermarkets.

In the article, she also shared that findings from a recent study by students from the NUS College of Alice & Peter Tan showed that interactions between supermarket staff and senior consumers can help forge community ties and give the elderly a sense of care and concern. Such social support is especially important for senior citizens who live alone.

To read the full article, click here.

Laos in the diplomatic strategies of China and Vietnam

16 December 2015

Lianhe Zaobao

In an article contribution, Mr Shu Quanzhi, a PhD candidate from the Department of History, had discussed the diplomatic strategies of China and Vietnam vis-à-vis Laos.

In the article, he mentioned that there is a need for Vietnam to maintain good relations with Laos for the sake of its national security.

He added that it is also important for China to continue developing its relations with Laos as Laos will assume the chairmanship of ASEAN next year and the South China Sea issue is an important topic in China-ASEAN relations.

Singaporeans-first policies ‘may affect integration of foreigners’

15 December 2015


In an opinion article, Associate Professor Elaine Ho, Department of Geography, found that Chinese immigrants who came to Singapore in the 1990s integrated more efficiently compared with those who arrived after 2004.

This finding were based on in-depth interviews conducted with 20 Chinese immigrants aged between 35 and 65. The finding also suggested that government policies in Singapore that were introduced to enhance preferential treatment for citizens over permanent residents might have affected social integration of foreigners.

The findings were shared at an international symposium on Chinese diasporas that was organised by NTU on 13 December 2015.

To read the full article, click here.