The Singapore Water Story: Sustainable Development in an Urban City State

Singapore’s journey during the past forty-five years is an outstanding example that, in spite of multiple hardships, pragmatic policies, clear visions, long-term planning, forward-looking strategies and political will, as well as a relentless urge to improve, can result in strong foundations for sustainable development.

This book describes the journey of Singapore’s development and the fundamental role that water has had in shaping it. What makes this case so unique is that the quest for self-sufficiency in terms of water availability in a fast-changing urban context has been crucial to the way development policies and agendas have been planned throughout the years. The authors analyse plans, policies, institutions, laws and regulations, water demand and water supply strategies, water quality and water conservation considerations, partnerships and importance of the media. They assess overall how all these issues have evolved in response to the dynamic needs of the city-state.

The study of Singapore shows how a dynamic society can address development without losing its focus on the environment. In the city-state, environmental concerns in general, and water concerns in particular, have played a major role in its transformation from a third world to a first world country. How and why this transformation took place is the main focus of this authoritative book.

By Cecilia Tortajada, Yugal Joshi and Asit K. Biswas, 2013, Routledge, London, 286 pages.

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A Chinese version of this book is available by China Planning Press, 2015, translated by Yang Shangbao. Also, an Hindi version, 2018, has been published by National Book Trust, India.