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Survey finds 9 in 10 Singaporeans see need to put nation before self

18 Aug 2023 2 min read

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A survey conducted by the People’s Action Party’s Policy Forum (PPF) has found that most Singaporeans saw the importance of unity and the need to prioritise national interests over sectional or self-interests. However, compared to older Singaporeans, younger Singaporeans were less confident these values would be upheld.

When asked about the capacity of Singaporeans to accept painful adjustments and adapt for future success, about 9 in 10 said it remained important. Among them, business owners and entrepreneurs believed most strongly in the need to retain this capacity, compared to students and employed persons.

The findings were released ahead of the inaugural PPF | Insights dialogue series, which will also commemorate the birth centenary of Singapore’s founding Prime Minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew. The first of the series, to be held on Saturday 26 August 2023, is titled Tripartism: Past, Present and Future”.

An online survey held from 28 July to 6 August 2023 (see Annex) received about 1,500 valid responses. The questions were based on speeches Mr Lee made from 1955 to 2012, focused on themes he covered repeatedly when addressing workers and employers. Survey respondents were shown a selection of quotes before providing their answers. Where the sample was not representative of the resident population by sex, age, or race, it was weighted accordingly for the purpose of analysis.

PPF Advisor Josephine Teo said “At the National Day Celebrations this year, the Singapore Government refreshed a call for all Singaporeans to rally and move Onward As One. Thus, it is encouraging that so many Singaporeans have affirmed their belief to working together in support of national unity. In today’s increasingly fragmented world, and as a young nation with no hinterland to fall back on, we cannot afford to turn inwards and even less so, turn against each other. Our unity is our greatest strength – we must never lose it.”

All survey findings, together with dialogue highlights, will be available on the Party’s website and social media platforms post-dialogue.


Annex – Summary of Survey Results

About PPF | Insights

Since its inception, the Party has championed for a Singapore with opportunities for all. The PPF serves as a platform to enhance the understanding of policies and the policymaking process and facilitate deep engagement with government leaders on policy issues.

In commemoration of the birth centenary of PAP’s founding Secretary-General Lee Kuan Yew, PPF will introduce PPF | Insights, a dialogue series discussing key ideas and values espoused by Mr Lee in the areas of tripartism, policy-making and international policies. The series is headlined by past and present PAP Chairmen – Mr Lim Boon Heng and Mr Khaw Boon Wan, and Deputy Prime Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economic Policies Mr Heng Swee Keat; and marks the PPF’s continued efforts to drive change and champion policies tailored for Singapore’s future. Prior to each dialogue, PPF will also conduct a survey to understand the public’s perspective on the values to be discussed at the dialogue.

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