17 Jan 2017

The Straits Times

By Marissa Lee

Singapore has held its spot as one of the world leaders in talent, as its Government stays united around the central importance of talent in national development, according to a new report.

The Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI), released yesterday, ranked Singapore the world’s second-most talent-competitive country for the fourth straight year.

Once again, Singapore wasthe only Asian country on the top 10 list, which was compiled by graduate business school Insead, the AdeccoGroup and the Human Capital Leadership Institute of Singapore.

The annual report ranks 118 nations on their competitiveness based on the quality of talent they can produce, attract and retain.

GTCI academic director Paul Evans and team lead researcher Eduardo Rodriguez-Montemayor also noted in a research commentary that it will be “smaller entities like cities and regions” – such as Singapore – that will emerge as leaders in the worldwide war for talent in the new technology-driven economy.

“In terms of government usage of information and communications technology, Singapore – like Denmark – is one of the leading nations in the world,” they said.

This has been the result of Singapore’s historical focus on using education to drive societal change but also on its Government’s single-minded emphasis on talent in national development, Insead observed.

“Talent attraction, development and retention, along with enabling, are not just issues of concern to the ministries of Labour and Education or a powerful Ministry of Manpower or an Infocomm Development Authority– they are the focus of all ministries, within the scope of an all-embracing SmartNation strategy.”

Co-creation is a key part of this strategy where all stakeholders, including talent from abroad, work closely to find innovative ways around challenges, said Professor Evans and Dr Rodriguez-Montemayor.

“This is in striking contrast to the government and political debates in many Western nations, where forward-looking thinking often appears to be lost in public debates over closing factories, immigration and terrorist threats.”

Source: The Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Limited. Reproduced with permission