Inside Higher Ed
December 4th, 2014
The potential for Western universities to forge links with Singapore
is growing, but they should not take a “normative approach” on freedom
of expression in the city state, according to the president of Nanyang
Bertil Andersson spoke to Times Higher Education in London when he was part of a delegation led by Singapore’s president, Tony Tan, on the nation’s first state visit to the UK.
NTU, which has recently seen a dramatic rise in its global rankings
positions and citation impact scores, has opened a medical school in
Singapore in a joint venture with Imperial College London. The
partnership “may be one of the most spectacular academic joint ventures
in today’s world," according to Andersson, a Swede who is a member of
the board of trustees of the Nobel Foundation.
In terms of academic freedom in Singapore, Yale-NUS College, a
liberal arts institution opened in 2011 by the U.S. college and the
National University of Singapore, has prompted concerns about freedom of
expression from some Yale staff. In 2012, Yale academics voted in
support of a motion raising concerns about the “history of lack of
respect for civil and political rights in the state of Singapore,” where
homosexuality is illegal and there are limitations on rights to free
speech and public assembly.