Singapore's First Year of COVID-19: Public Health, Immigration, the Neoliberal State, and Authoritarian Populism

Kenneth Paul Tan* (Editor)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book/ReportBook or reportpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This book addresses the question of what Singapore's COVID-19 pandemic response in the first year can tell us about the strengths and weaknesses of the Singapore model and what its prospects might be in an increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous post-pandemic world. As a concise, holistic, and critical documentation of the first year of COVID-19 in Singapore, the multi-disciplinary chapters in this book provide a broad-ranging analysis of an internationally admired model of governance severely tested by a global pandemic crisis whose end is still not in sight.
The book focuses specifically on the interconnections among Singapore’s political economy, public health policies, immigration policies, and the elite and pragmatic system of state authoritarianism that, especially since the 1980s, has been at the heart of managing the tensions and contradictions of a nation-state that is also a global city, an important node in a network of goods, services, investments, wealth, people, ideas, and images, all moving rapidly. The chapters critically employ topics and concepts such as neoliberal globalization, authoritarian populism, moral panic, social stigmatization, heterotopia, spatial segregation, and others to make sense of a thoroughly complex situation.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages168
ISBN (Electronic)9789811903687
ISBN (Print)9789811903670
Publication statusPublished - 13 Apr 2022

User-Defined Keywords

  • Singapore model of development
  • Technocratic governance in Singapore
  • Electoral democracy in Singapore
  • Neoliberal globalization in global-city Singapore
  • Authoritarian populism in Singapore
  • Moral panic in Singapore
  • COVID-19 pandemic response in Singapore
  • Public health in Singapore
  • Immigration policy in Singapore
  • Migrant workers in Singapore
  • Authoritarian government in Singapore
  • Policymaking in Singapore
  • Singapore model of governance
  • Singapore model of policymaking


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