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Liberalism Unveiled: Forging a New Third Way in Singapore


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  • Description
  • About the Editor
  • Since 1965, Singapore has been propelled to the dizzying heights of first-world prosperity. Yet, the People's Action Party's signature style of technocratic elitism has come under increasing criticism by a new generation of left-leaning progressive scholars and activists condemning the excesses of neoliberalism. The PAP's mode of governance that prioritizes economic growth is criticised in favour of a vaguely European-style welfare state and greater state intervention.

    Bryan Cheang and Donovan Choy break this traditional pro-PAP versus anti-PAP dichotomy by providing a fresh classical liberal perspective. The authors contend that both sides discern only parts of the political puzzle correctly. This book envisions a new path forward for Singapore's policy-making, one characterised by greater competition & freedom. It critiques the conservative-right through a fresh take on the philosophical underpinnings of the "Singapore Consensus": communitarianism, meritocracy and technocracy. The authors also engage with the new social democratic orthodoxy, demonstrating the dangers of egalitarian interventions & state-based environmentalism.

    Applying the interdisciplinary insights of political philosophy and political economy, this novel account recommends epistemic liberalism, a system of governance based on intellectual humility, limited government, and decentralisation.

  • Bryan Cheang is the Founder of the Adam Smith Center, Singapore's only organisation promoting research & education in the classical liberal tradition. Founded in 2018, it is part of the Atlas Network, and has since collaborated with government institutions, schools, and student societies to communicate its unique message of an open society.

    Bryan is also a graduate of the National University of Singapore and King's College London, where he is completing his PhD in Political Economy. He is also a Humane Studies Fellow with the Institute for Humane Studies and an Adam Smith Fellow with the Mercatus Center. His academic research interests revolve around the political economy of development and applied economic policy, and his current focus is on state-market relations in the East Asian developmental state tradition. Bryan combines his academic interests with his previous policymaking experience with the Singapore civil service, where he worked on human capital policies for small-medium enterprises. Bryan is also the author of a new illustrated resource titled Optimist's Guide to the Future, published by Beard and Balloon.

    Donovan Choy is an independent researcher based in Singapore. He is a graduate of the CEVRO Institute where he obtained a Masters in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE) with a specialisation in Institutional, Behavioural, and Austrian Economics.

    He was also previously a Visiting Scholar at the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER). He is also an alumnus of the Institute for Humane Studies and a Young Affiliate at the European-based Network for Constitutional Economics and Social Philosophy (NOUS). His research interests revolve around the political economy of immigration and cultural political economy.

ISBN: 9789811220746
Cover Type: Hardback
Page Count: 252
Year Published: 2021