Building the World

August 19, 2015
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Singapore at 50

 

Singapore at 50: does diversity contribute to innovation and prosperity? Image: wikimedia commons.

This month marks the 50th anniversary of Singapore‘s independence. Rapid growth may be traced to its founding, as a colony, but more importantly, as a special economic zone. With per capita GDP of $56,000, and 90% home ownership, an achievement aided by the development of Housing Development Board (HDB) homes, the 277 sq. miles are marked by prosperity. HDB helped to eliminate poverty and also promoted diversity: the goal was for Chinese and Malay families alike to think of themselves first as Singaporean. With four official languages, and multiple recognized religions, can Singapore claim the power of diversity in prosperity?

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

March 28, 2015
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew Water Prize

“The view from Marine One, en route to Firebaugh, California, 2014” Peter Souza, photographer. Image: www.whitehouse.gov.

Singapore recently awarded the Lee Kuan Yew Water Prize, named after the founding Minister who passed into history on March 23, to the Orange County Water District, California, for success in groundwater management and water reuse, highlighted in International Water Week, to promote contributions towards solving global water problems for the benefit of humanity. Minister Lee Kuan Yew (1923-2015) co-founded the city state during independence in 1965. California continues to be challenged by drought; NASA’s Jay Famiglietti predicts reservoirs may run out of water in 2016. How can California lead the way with methods that may help other areas of the world suffering water scarcity?

Gies, Erica. “Who Owns Groundwater?” http://ensia.com/features/outlawing-water-conflict/

Schiavenza, Matt. “The Economics of California’s Drought,” March 21, 2015. The Atlantic Magazine. http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2015/03/the-economics-of-californias-drought/388375/

http://www.wsj.com/articles/lee-kuan-yew-singapores-founding-father-dies-at-91-1427056223

http://www.siww.com.sg/laureates

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

January 1, 2015
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

2015: Water for Life

 

Water. Image: wikimedia commons.

Will 2015, culmination of United Nations’ Water for Life, fulfill its mission? Global demand for potable water will increase two-thirds by 2025. Singapore began design of a new water system in 1960; today, 30% comes from desalination, recycling of wastewater, and rain collection. But success rates can change. Las Vegas had plenty of water before the Hoover Dam brought bright lights to what became a big city; now drought is a problem. Worldwide, potable water underground may be threatened by hydraulic fracturing. Will the “sleeping giant” of what may be the most ancient water on earth, perhaps 2.5 billion years old, recently discovered in Canada, yield hope? According to Professor Barbara Sherwood Lollar, University of  Toronto, the source contains more water than all the world’s rivers, swamps, and lakes combined.

For more: http://www.un.org/waterforlifedecade/index.shtml

“The contribution of the Precambrian continental lithosphere to global H2 production,” Barbara Sherwood Lollar, T.C. Onstott, G. Lacrampe-Couloume, and C.J. Ballentine. Nature 516, 379-382 (18 December 2014) doi:10.1038/nature14017.

“Volume of world’s oldest water estimated,” Rebecca Morelle, BBC News, Science and Environment. December 17, 2014.

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-30527357

“Drought: A Creeping Disaster,” Alex Prud’homme. The New York Times, July 16, 2011. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/17/opinion/sunday/17drought.html?_r=0

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

October 4, 2014
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Cities as Destiny

Calgary by night. Photograph by Gorgo, 2006. Image courtesy of wikimedia commons.

October, 1967: Arnold Toynbee published “Cities of Destiny” exploring elements that, when blended in an urban environment, may foster innovation and greatness. Cyrene set a trend: the ancient Greek city-state created a new culture where sciences, arts, education flourished. Singapore illustrates the power of a city to make its own laws, taxes, policies. Cities use – and therefore can save – significant energy; C40, an organization of the world’s mega-cities, may show the way forward to a better environment. Will the proposed Global Parliament of Mayors, convening 600 city leaders around the globe, forge a new direction for progress? Over half of our world lives in cities. Cooperative leagues of cities may shape the world’s destiny.

For more:

Hargreaves, Steve. “Greatest urban projects of all time,” CNNMoney, October 7, 2014. http://money.cnn.com/gallery/news/economy/2014/10/07/greatest-urban-projects/3.html

C40 Cities, Climate Leadership Group: www.c40.org

Global Parliament of Mayors:

http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-29352004

http://www.globalparliamentofmayors.org/

Barber, Benjamin R. “If Mayors Ruled the World.” (Yale University Press, 2014). www.ifmayorsruledtheworld.com

Toynbee, Arnold. “Cities of Destiny.” (Thames & Hudson, 1967)

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

July 28, 2014
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Water and Leadership

University of Massachusetts Boston. Image courtesy of www.umb.edu.

Should coastal universities, cities, and communities take the lead regarding the future of water? A breakthrough almost achieved by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) might be realized. Archives of Senator Morris K. Udall reveal issues considered by the United States’ Interior Committee during the 1930s’: scientists and engineers envisioned a way to desalinate water at cost of one cent per kilowatt-hour; this prediction has yet to achieved, although Singapore/Siemens may soon succeed. Another consideration: power and environment. Yet another – urban portals. Massachusetts’ great universities might consult the plan by Richard Williams, completed in 1775, now at Oxford University’s Bodleian Library, for Boston‘s leadership.

For Senator Udall’s archives: http://speccoll.library.arizona.edu/collections/papers-morris-k-udall

For “A Plan of the city of Boston” by Richard Williams, 1775: Building the World, p. 824.

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

April 23, 2014
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Take Five

Dave Brubeck: Image courtesy of wikimedia.org.

“Take Five” is the best-selling jazz single in history; the song is written in quintuple time, hence the name of Paul Desmond’s jewel performed by The Dave Brubeck Quartet. Five is also a lucky number for Singapore: Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Muslim and Taoist houses of worship have graced the city since the 1800’s. In Singapore, music of five languages syncopates the air: Chinese, English, Malay, and Tamil are official, but some say Mandarin might be the most heard. Multiculturalism may be encouraged by educational standards: English is taught as lingua franca but each student in primary and secondary school also certifies in another of Singapore’s official languages. Should North America follow a similar policy regarding: English, French, Nahuatl, Navajo, and Spanish?

For more on Dave Brubeck, whose landmark album Time Out was the result of an international exchange in Turkey, and to hear “Take Five,” please see: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/arts-post/post/dave-brubeck-take-five-and-his-longtime-collaborator-credited-with-the-jazz-legends-biggest-hit/2012/12/05/6ae17f16-3f19-11e2-bca3-aadc9b7e29c5_blog.html

Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

October 11, 2013
by buildingtheworld
0 comments

Winning Voice of the Future 2013-2014: Angela J. Newton, Nursing Program, UMB

Peace: New Mandala. Image: courtesy asiapacific.anu.edu/newmandala/ Peace1-e135263978498/

The city-state of Singapore is a profitable tropical island trading station in South-East Asia. It stands as the most economically developed country in the region, despite effects of the world’s War on Terror on business. It strives to keeping balance among human race by using visions and strategies dubbed as the “New Asia-Singapore.” This culture expresses the essence of a vibrant, multicultural, sophisticated place where tradition and modernity, East and West meet in harmony (Ooi, 2004). The government’s present policy is to maintain the multi-cultural society by preserving the distinct cultural identity of each ethnic community (Lim, 1989). In order for all parts of society to reach mutual success, an openess to diverse ethnic factors and sensitivity to culture, politics, housing, and education are a must for maintaining racial harmony.

Angela J. Newton, Traditional BSN Nursing Program, University of Massachusetts Boston. Voice of the Future 2013-2014.

To read more please visit the 2013-14 winner page

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

April 8, 2013
by buildingtheworld
1 Comment

Multicultural Cities – Singapore

Sultan Mosque, photo by Judhi Prasetyo, Creative Commons

Located on a strait running between the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean, Singapore connects China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand. The port holds the record for shipping tonnage among all global ports. A city of the world, Singapore has four official languages: English, Malay, Mandarin, and Tamil. As early as 1800s, houses of worship included the Sultan Mosque, Hindu Sri Mariamman Temple, Taoist Wak Hai Cheng Temple, and Buddhist Kuan Yin Temple. Can Singapore inspire more empathy and multiculturalism in our world?

 

Creative Commons License
Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

June 19, 2012
by zoequinn001
0 comments

Singapore Sling

From easycocktailrecipes.com.

No study of Singapore’s contributions to history could be complete without mention of the “Singapore Sling,” a cocktail invented in 1915 in the Raffles Hotel by Ngiam Tong Boon, a bartender of multicultural background. The mélange of ingredients in the exotic drink turns the potion pink. Interested in cuisine? A mix of Chinese and Malay traditions resulted in a new kind of fare called Peranakan or Nonya cuisine.  Travelers say the dishes pair well with a certain concoction made by Ngiam Tong Boon.

 

Creative Commons License
Building the World Blog by Kathleen Lusk Brooke and Zoe G Quinn is licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Skip to toolbar