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CREATE to enhance R&D in Singapore

19 November 2012

(From left) Professor Low Teck Seng, NRF Chief Executive Officer; Singapore Deputy Prime Minister and NRF Chairman Mr Teo Chee Hean; Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Singapore Permanent Secretary (National Research & Development) Ms Yong Ying-I at the opening ceremony of CREATE

Research and Development (R&D) is an essential activity in a knowledge-based economy like Singapore. Through R&D, we discover new knowledge, drive innovations that improve our lives and develop new economic opportunities.

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong was speaking at the official opening of the Campus for Research Excellence And Technological Enterprise (CREATE), which is housed at the NUS University Town, on 16 November.

Highlighting the importance of R&D for the country, Prime Minister Lee, who is also Chairman of the Research, Innovation and Enterprise Council at the National Research Foundation (NRF), said that Singapore's R&D budget from 2011 to 2015 was raised to S$16 billion, up 20 per cent, as it was "necessary despite the economic slowdown".

"CREATE is the latest effort to enhance R&D in Singapore. It will bring together in one campus, leading global research institutions with our own institutions in Singapore, to develop practical innovations and economic opportunities for us," he said.

Spanning over 67,000 square metres, the S$360-million CREATE, which is the first-of-its-kind worldwide, is home to some 1,200 researchers. There are 15 interdisciplinary research groups from 10 renowned universities - among them ETH Zurich, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, NUS, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Technical University of Munich and Technion - working in the areas of human, energy, environmental and urban systems.

Collaborations are already in the works including a study on energy and environmental sustainability solutions for megacities by Shanghai Jiao Tong University and NUS, and a project to develop indicators and novel therapeutics for common inflammatory diseases in Asia by Hebrew University of Jerusalem and NUS.