To Build A Competitive And Inclusive Singapore



6.50pm:      Select students to be seated at MPH; Log in to Webinar

7.00pm:      A/P Ho Chee Kong, Master of Tembusu College, will introduce the Tembusu Forum

7.05pm:      Professor Tommy Koh, Rector of Tembusu College, will introduce the topic and speakers

7.15pm:      Dr Beh Swan Gin

7.30pm:      Professor Lily Kong

7.45pm:      Dr Faizal Bin Yahya

8.00pm:      Question & Answer session with students

8.50pm:      Concluding remarks by speakers and Chair

9.00pm:      End of forum

This forum will be held under Chatham House Rule.



Dr Beh Swan Gin is the Chairman of the Singapore Economic Development Board.  He is a board director for DesignSingapore Council, Enterprise Singapore, Human Capital Leadership Institute, and Singapore Exchange Limited. He also chairs the board of Ascendas Funds Management (S) Ltd.  He is a member of the University of St Gallen Advisory Board.  He was Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Law from July 2012 to November 2014 and prior to that, he was managing director of EDB from August 2008 to June 2012.   Dr Beh is a medical doctor by training and graduated from the National University of Singapore.  He is also a Sloan Fellow with a Master of Science in Management from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and completed the Advanced Management Programme at the Harvard Business School.

For the forum, Dr Beh will speak on the topic “Opportunities and Challenges that are Re-shaping our Economic Development Strategies”.

Dr Faizal Bin Yahya is Senior Research Fellow in the Governance and Economy Department at the Institute of Policy Studies.

Prior to joining IPS, he was an Assistant Professor in the South Asian Studies Programme, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, National University of Singapore. Concurrently, he was a Visiting Research Fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies from 2008 to 2009 (ISEAS). He has also served in the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (International Policy) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) as a Foreign Service Officer. He was a member of the Singapore Delegation to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in 1998 and was also involved in multilateral meetings dealing with environmental issues such as climate change and transboundary hazardous wastes. He was appointed as a Board Member to the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) in 2019.

Faizal received his PhD in Economics in 2000 from the University of Sydney, Australia and was an Australian Overseas Postgraduate Research Scholar from 1994 to 1998.

For the forum, Dr Faizal will be touching on the theme of inclusivity, the impact of Industry 4.0, digitalisation and the pandemic on tech-employment opportunities, and measures to make the latter available for the local the workforce.

Professor Lily Kong
is SMU’s fifth President, and the first Singaporean to lead the 21-year old university.  She was previously Provost of SMU, Vice Provost and Vice President at the National University of Singapore (in various portfolios), and Executive Vice President (Academic) of Yale-NUS College. 

An award-winning researcher and teacher, Professor Kong received her PhD in  Geography from University College London.  She has received numerous international fellowship awards including the Commonwealth Fellowship Award and the Fulbright Fellowship Award. She has also won the Robert Stoddard Award from the Association of American Geographers for her contributions to the study of religion.  In a global study by Stanford University (2020), she was identified as among the world’s top 1% of scientists in the field of Geography.  Professor Kong has also been conferred the Public Administration Medal (Silver) and Public Service Star.

Professor Kong is internationally known for her research on social and cultural change in Asian cities, focusing on a range of issues ranging from religion, cultural policy and creative economy, urban heritage and conservation, to smart cities.  

For the forum, Professor Kong will discuss issues of inclusion in a digital economy and society.


The Tembusu (Fagraea fragrans) is a large evergreen tree in the family Gentianaceae. It is native to Southeast Asia. Its trunk is dark brown, with deeply fissured bark, looking somewhat like a bittergourd. It grows in an irregular shape from 10 to 25m high. Its leaves are light green and oval in shape. Its yellowish flowers have a distinct fragrance and the fruits of the tree are bitter tasting red berries, which are eaten by birds and fruit bats.