A Mandarin and the Making of Public Policy: Reflections by Ngiam Tong Dow

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Edited by Simon Tay and Ngiam Tong Dow

Singapore's success story has increasingly been recognised but few have told it from the perspective of an insider. As a senior civil servant and "mandarin" from 1959 to 1999, Ngiam Tong Dow served with the founding generation of political leaders and contributed to the country's economic growth. In this book, he reflects on these experiences, sharing personal anecdotes and perceptive insights of Singapore's early decades. He also boldly questions some of the policies of government and emerging trends in the country to suggest how Singapore must change to survive and thrive in the future.

Ngiam Tong Dow served in the elite Singapore Administrative Service for more than 40 years. His vision, foresight and leadership in economics and finance have helped transform Singapore into a text-book case in development economics. In his career, Ngiam has received four National Day awards, including the Distinguished Service Order.

He worked closely with the founding political leaders of Singapore including Goh Keng Swee, former Deputy Prime Minister, and the late Hon Sui Sen, the former Finance Minister. He also served under Lee Kuan Yew, the founding Prime Minister of Singapore, and the succeeding Prime Minister, Goh Chok Tong. 

Simon Tay is an associate professor in the National University of Singapore at the Faculty of Law and an Editor in Chief for the Asian Journal of International Law. He concurrently chairs the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.

Publication Year: 2006
244 pages, 229mm x 152mm
ISBN: 978-9971-69-350-3, Paperback

NUS Press