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The Culture of Technology of Singapore

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The objective of this paper is to map the sociological context in which the cultural economy of technology of Singapore exists. Taking a socio-historical perspective, this paper argues that the development of Singapore as a technological 'intelligent island' must take centre stage in relation to the sociological analysis of modern Singapore's political, economic, and socio-cultural structure. This involves a critique of theories of the information society and empirical research on East Asian developmental states. The aim is to chart the development of technology in Singapore, from its founding as a colonial port-city to its current status as an 'intelligent island', and to situate this development in its social context. In addressing the issue of the global expansion of localized technological knowledge hubs, I argue that while these technological 'hubs' are increasingly linked in complex political, economic and social networks, one must also account for the developmental trajectory of each particular 'hub' and to explain the socio-cultural complex of societies, which promote themselves as such. This paper intends to demonstrate how this construction of a technological nation state is neither a context-free project nor one that is free of complex historical antagonisms and contradictions.


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