Science for pedestrians on the streets of Singapore

SINGAPORE – In Singapore, to learn science, one does not have to be inside a school, laboratory, or a science museum.

People can learn on their way to school or work – science is on a bridge, by the sidewalk, or a building. These places are not your usual geek-out areas such as museums, galleries, and laboratories. They're also not just about infrastructure and architecture that exemplify the laws of physics perfectly. These are permanent installations representing how science and technology shaped this little Southeast Asian nation's history and how it may determine its future.

The Helix: Walking on your DNA

World Bank data show that as of 2012, Singapore spends about 2% of its gross domestic product (GDP) on research and development. The Philippines, in contrast, spends way below 1% of its GDP on research and development, a far cry from our neighbor.

How Singapore rose as one of the economic leaders of the region can also be traced to how its leaders value science. The culture of science in this country paved the way for some of the well-known inventions and innovations the world benefits from, such as the USB flash disk and the Creative sound card, to name a few.

To achieve this, Singaporeans did not leave learning about science inside the confines of schools. They walk with it and live with it. –