Singapore: An Atlas of Perpetual Territorial Transformation

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By Rodolphe De Koninck, Julie Drolet and Marc Girard

Since 1965, when it became a fully independent city-state, Singapore has been an effervescent laboratory of economic, social and environmental transformation and innovation. The government of the small island republlc, which currently covers about 720 sq km, has thoroughly transformed and extended the lands under its control to serve the needs and ambitions of its citizens. The systematic overhaul of the Singaporean environment reflects a deliberate policy of social transformation, a revolution controlled and monitored from above.

While Singapore's achievements in the realm of economic and social development have been carefully observed, little has been said about the close connections between these accomplishments and territorial management. Based on an extended series of diachronic maps, this book illustrates the nature and depth of the territorial changes that have occurred since the early 1960s. The commentary that accompanies the maps shows how Singapore has used this ongoing territorial transformation to support its position in a globalized economy, and also as a tool of social and political management.


Rodolphe De Koninck was Professor of Geography and Canada Chair of Asian Research at the University of Montreal. His other works include Borneo Transformed and Gambling with the Land.

Julie Drolet is a Graduate Student in the Department of Geography, University of Montreal.

Marc Girard is a Cartographer and GIS Specialist in the Department of Geography, University of Montreal.


Publication Year: 2008
108 pages, 297mm x 210mm
ISBN: 978-9971-69-397-8, Hardback

NUS Press