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Social Studies Model Answer Chapter 5 (Causes of Diversity)

Updated: Nov 21, 2021

1. Immigration

One of the causes of diversity in Singapore is the presence of immigration policies that promote this. An aging population and brain drain happening in Singapore cause immigration. Singapore’s population is aging because the country’s birth rate is low and medical/healthcare technologies are getting better. As a result, people are living longer while there is less and less young people entering the workforce. This is shrinking Singapore’s workforce for the economy as more and more senior retire. Similarly, Singapore is also experiencing brain drain as many talented Singaporeans are migrating overseas for better job opportunities as well as a better lifestyle. As a result, Singapore’s economy will not be able to function in its best capacity without its best talent to drive it. Due to this shrinking workforce caused by an aging population and a flow of talent out of Singapore, the government has implemented pro-immigration policies to encourage foreign workers and foreign talents into our country to replace these people. For instance, to counter brain drain, Singapore has very attractive tax rates that draws wealthy and successful business people into Singapore. Sir James Dyson, a billionaire industrial inventor and entrepreneur is one of the world’s top talent residing in Singapore now. Together with thousands for foreign workers in many economic sectors, immigration has caused more diversity in Singapore.

2. Economic Opportunities

Another cause of more diversity is presence of more economic opportunities in Singapore. This can come about because of more MNCs establishing their presence in Singapore and Singapore’s labour needs. MNCs are large overseas companies who chose to set up in Singapore due to her stability political environment, excellent infrastructure, low cooperate tax rates and highly skilled labour force. When MNC invest and set up their production plants in Singapore they create jobs that pay well and ultimately attract a fair share of foreign talent to Singapore. For example, Singapore has a petrol-chemical industry with major oil companies like Shell, Mobile, Chevron, BP establishing their refineries here. These companies has attracted many local and foreign petrol-chemical engineers and technicans work in Singapore. Another source of Singapore’s diversity is the labour needs of Singapore. This refers to essential jobs that keep Singapore going but are shunted by local Singaporeans due to low pay and physical hard work. These jobs include construction workers, nurses, domestic helpers, cleaners, and employees in the food and beverage sector. Without these essential workers, many critical aspects of Singapore life would not be feasible. For instance, domestic workers in Singapore enable many families to have dual income. As a result, Singapore imports many foreign workers to meet its labour needs thus causing more diversity in Singapore.

3. Social Cultural Environment

Another factor in Singapore that has caused more diversity here is the presence of a good social cultural environment in the form of strong community support, a safe environment and a good education system in Singapore. A community support refers to the presence of a group of same foreign nationals within a certain area. These same foreign nationals gather to support each other on a regular basis like over the weekends through conversations in their own langauage, interactions over familiar food from their countries, exchange of ideas and information about daily living. For instance, many Thai nationals congregate around the Golden Mile area in Singapore. That place has many Thai food joints, provision shops and even entertainment outlets. Many Thais gather there to interact and support each other. When potential migrants know that such community support is available in the country they intend to go, it will provide them with a greater sense of security to make the decision to migrate to Singapore eventually. This will add to the diversity in Singapore. The strong law and order and low crime environment is also a big draw for potential migrants intending to come to Singapore. Singapore police is incorruptible and is efficient in maintain law and order in Singapore. The streets of Singapore are safe any time of the day or night which provide a strong sense of security for potential migrants to come to Singapore. Hence, many of them decide to immigrate to Singapore. Lastly, Singapore’s education system is also world renown for its quality and affordable. Singapore’s teachers are amongst the most well trained in the world. Our students constantly score in the top band in rankings like PISA. The school infrastructure is also very modern. These educational advantages is a plus point for many overseas talents with children wanting to migrate to Singapore. In addition, our tertiary institutions also attract many foreign students. As a result of such active community support, a safe society and a country with quality education, many migrants do come to Singapore causing greater diversity here.

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