So it's an issue of reputation on the international stage - again. Attracting top notch academics to Singapore was also an issue raised by Warwick University when it pulled out of a deal in 2005. The worry then was that the campus could not attract academics of a high nature to live in a country were academics had to live and work in conditions...
[where The University of NSW's] [...] management has conceded it cannot guarantee protection of its academic staff in Singapore, given the city-state's harsh laws governing public comment and defamation.
And a situation where
[The University of NSW] would be powerless to protect its academics should they fall foul of the Government over issues of public comment.
It is yet again the case of an old formula losing impact in a new world. How long will these experiments of trying to attract top notch academics while at the same time threatening them with sanctions if they discuss certain topics last?
This issue has been going on since July 2004 and beyond. The People's Action Party must realise that their policies are keeping academics away, their empty promises of 'opening up', out-of-bound markers and dare I say it - nepotism - are what is frightening top notch academics away.
"Peter Sever of Imperial College London said the UK Royal College of Physicians "should consider advising its members of the potential dangers of accepting future posts in Singapore" because of a "lack of fairness" that "can impact upon an individual's professional reputation". The case of Simon Shorvon, who served as director of Singapore's National Neuroscience Institute
Research agency refutes accusations that it failed to meet goals
Singapore - Singapore's Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*Star) refuted accusations by a prestigious US university that it failed to meet its side of the bargain in supporting Johns Hopkins University's research arm, news reports said on Tuesday.
The decision to wind down the facility after eight years in Singapore was 'not taken hastily and was based on nearly three years of monitoring and scrutiny,' The Straits Times quoted Dr Andre Wan, director of A*Star's biomedical research council, as saying.
The research facility failed to attract top scientists and had not met eight out of 13 performance benchmarks with the 83 million Singapore dollars (53 million US dollars) in funding, A*Star said.
The Division of Johns Hopkins Singapore (DJHS) is to be closed within 12 months.
The Baltimore, Maryland-based university was quoted as saying that A*Star had not met its 'financial and educational obligations.'
The closure was expected to leave dozens and faculty and staff without jobs and disrupt the education of four graduate students who had been offered places.
The university said this was a 'reputational issue' for Singapore and A*Star.
The city-state has been aiming to achieve the status of a major research centre and has attracted many well known specialists from abroad.
Dr Edison Liu, chairman of the scientific advisory committee appointed by DJHS, said he hoped that 'cooler heads would prevail' so that two great institutions would not fight each other.
© 2006 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur