Joint Seminar with SASP (17 Sept): The Intersections of Compassion, Sanskara and the Neoliberal Project: Mainstreaming Aspirations of Rural Poor in Kutch, Gujarat

Dr Bindi Shah from University of Southampton examines this:

Based on multi-sited fieldwork in India, Britain, USA and Singapore, I examine TripleS, a Jain faith-based organisation's engagement in eradicting rural poverty in India.

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Graduate Students Research Seminar (17 Sept): Reflecting on Risk: Researcher Identity and Remote Fieldwork Settings

Prof Helen Sampson from Cardiff University, UK examines this:

Risk in the field is accepted by most ethnographers and may even be glamorised in some contexts where 'macho' values have influenced University research cultures.

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Department Seminar (10 Sept): The Traffic in Hierarchy: Precedence and Power in Burmese Social Life

A/P Ward Keeler from University of Texas at Austin examines this:

Traffic on city streets is the first of three scenes from everyday life I use in this lecture to illustrate principles of hierarchy and power as they obtain in contemporary Burmese social life.

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Open Positions

The department is inviting applications for the position of Assistant Professor.

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Joint Seminar with SASP (02 Sept): Emerging Fault Lines and Debates in the Anthropology of Ethics and Morality

Prof James Laidlaw from University of Cambridge examines this:

The field of the anthropology of ethics/morality has developed rapidly the last decade and a half, and is still gathering pace.

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Chair Professors

Prof Chua Beng Huat and Prof Jean Yeung have been appointed by the University as Provost's Chairs in recognition of their outstanding and impactful scholarly accomplishments, which are internationally acknowledged.


Vineeta Sinha

Succeeding to the Headship of a department where I was once an undergraduate student is an enormous privilege and a responsibility which I have accepted with humility. This is where I was exposed to the disciplines of Sociology and Anthropology and encountered inspiring educators and researchers. This is where I now practice my craft – teaching and doing ethnographic research – with great personal satisfaction. This disciplinary ‘joint-ness’ and the institutional co-location of these disciplines began in 1965 when the ‘Department of Sociology’ was first founded at the then University of Singapore – and persists firmly into the present. Through the decades this dual disciplinary grounding has continued to be reflected in the intellectual tenor of the department.

The department offers a range of engaging undergraduate and graduate modules that speak to the complexities of everyday living that unfold in diverse socio-cultural and political settings. Examples include the following fields: comparative historical sociology; financial and economic sociology; urban studies; cultural studies; research on religion; family, health and demography studies; work, class, mobility and inequalities; politics, power and violence; law, justice, human rights, social movements and deviance; kinship, gender and sexuality; visual and popular culture, media and communication studies. The department strives to equip students with core theoretical and methodological skill sets with which to critically analyse any societal domain, comparatively and historically. The effort is to produce skilled researchers – theoreticians and methodologists – who are trained to ask critical questions, formulate research problems, design and execute a research agenda effectively – skills that they can further translate into any context, and certainly beyond academic settings.

The department is a diverse, dynamic and innovative research and teaching unit with strong expertise in research on Southeast Asia, East Asia and South Asia as well as on Singapore society. One of the largest Sociology departments in the world, it offers comprehensive undergraduate, honours and graduate programmes, led by a group of dedicated and creative researchers and educators. The strength and vitality of the department are rooted in its teaching capacity fronted by excellent educators not to mention its stellar research and publication profile given a strong core of accomplished researchers and intellectuals. The classrooms, departmental seminars, graduate workshops and conferences organized through department initiatives afford opportunities for debating and debunking ideas and perspectives on culture, politics and society, challenging students to problematize everything - in the spirit of refusing to take anything for granted.


Professor Vineeta Sinha

Head of Department

The Old Gods Are Losing Power! Theologies of Power and Rituals of Productivity in a Tamilnadu Village

Indira Arumugam

Modern Asian Studies, vol. 49 no. 3, 2015

Self-Care for Older People (SCOPE): A cluster randomized controlled trial of self-care training and health outcomes in low-income elderly in Singapore

Chan A., D.B. Matchar , M.A. Tsao , S. Harding , C-T. Chiu , Tay B., P. Raman , Z., Pietryla, M.K. Klein , V.E. Haldane

Contemporary Clinical Trials, vol. 41, 2015

Singaporeans' Perception of and Attitudes Toward Long-Term Care Services

Wee, Shiou-Liang, Athel J. Hu, Joel Yong, Wayne F. Chong, Prassanna, Raman and Angelique Chan

Qualitative Health Research, vol. 25 no. 2, 2015

Presence of and correction for interviewer error on an instrument assessing cognitive function of older adults

Malhotra, R., B.A. Haaland, C-L. Chei, A. Chan, C. Malhotra, and D. Matchar

Geriatrics Gerontology International, vol. 15, 2015

How Do Singaporeans Connect? Ties among Chinese, Malays and Indians

Vincent Chua

American Behavioral Scientist, vol. 59, 2015

Do Raffles Boys ‘Rule’ and Anglo-Chinese Boys ‘Own’ Singapore? Analysing School-To-Work Correspondences in an Elite Developmental State

Vincent Chua

International Studies in Sociology of Education, vol. 25 no. 1, 2015

Unequal Returns to Social Capital: The Study of Malays in Singapore Through a Network Lens

Vincent Chua and Irene Y.H. Ng

Asian Ethnicity, vol. 16 no. 1, 2015

Social Networks in East and Southeast Asia 1: National Characteristics, Institutions, Network Capital and Guanxi

Vincent Chua and Barry Wellman

American Behavioral Scientist, vol. 59, 2015

Social Networks in East and Southeast Asia 2: Labor Migration, Opportunity, Social Media, and Well-Being

Vincent Chua and Barry Wellman

American Behavioral Scientist, vol. 59, 2015

Prevalence and Correlates of Successful Ageing: A Comparative Study between China and South Korea

Feng, Qiushi, Joonmo Son, and Yi Zeng

European Journal of Aging, vol. 12 no. 2, 2015

Unmet Needs and Short-Term Mortality among Chinese Older Adults

Zhen, Zhihong, Feng Qiushi and Gu Danan

Journal of Disability Policy Studies, vol. 25 no. 4, 2015

The Neoclassical Origins of Polanyi's Self-Regulating Market

Kurtuluş Gemici

Sociological Theory, vol. 33 no. 2, 2015

Shareholder Value and Workforce Downsizing, 1981-2006

Jiwook Jung

Social Forces, vol. 93 no. 4, 2015

Rural Transformations

E. C. Thompson

Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Malaysia, 2015

Organizational Social Capital and Generalized Trust in Korea

Joonmo Son

American Behavioral Scientist, vol. 59, 2015

Parental Spending on School-Age Children: Structural Stratification and Parental Expectation

Hao. L. and Yeung, W.J.

Demography, vol. 52 no. 3, 2015

  • Emily Chua
  • Adelyn Lim
  • Xu Xiaohong