SINGAPORE - Nine months after a series of conversations began to engage Singaporeans to chart a path for the country as it recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic, a total of 19 partnerships to date that bring together the people and private sector and public agencies have been started.
These Alliances for Action, or AfAs, are looking at social issues like youth mental well-being and caregiving for persons with disabilities, as well as environmental and infrastructure issues such as sustainability and digitalisation.
Some alliances also look closely at economic and business opportunities such as smart commerce and robotics, as well as cross-cutting, issues like work-life harmony and mobilising corporates to do more for the wider community.
Many of them emerged as a result of concerns and ideas raised during the ongoing Emerging Stronger Conversations (ESCs) series announced by Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat in June 2020.
The ESCs are part of the Singapore Together movement begun by Mr Heng and his fourth-generation team of ministers to adopt a more consultative form of governance, and get citizens to go beyond having a say in policies and programmes, and actively shape them.
To take stock of these conversations, as well as the alliances, The Straits Times is organising a roundtable, in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, on March 22.
The session's theme is Stronger Together through alliances.
On the panel are Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Indranee Rajah, who has been steering the conversations with National Development Minister Desmond Lee, as well as group chief executive of PSA International Tan Chong Meng. Mr Lee and Mr Tan are co-chairs of the Emerging Stronger Taskforce.
Also on the panel are Dr Gillian Koh, deputy director (research) and senior research fellow at the Institute of Policy Studies, and Ms Melissa Kwee, CEO of the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre. The discussion will be moderated by The Straits Times' Singapore editor, Mr Zakir Hussain.
Readers who would like to submit questions to the panel can do so at this link by 6pm on March 17.
Reports on the roundtable will be published in The Straits Times and key highlights will be aired on video on ST's Facebook and YouTube pages.