Our tour of the final A-Star facility, Singapore’s Institute of Medical Biology (IMB) was a raw and unaltered presentation of the companies prospectives and capabilities. An overview of the microscopy lab was delivered candidly, yet with detail and the intention of broadening our perceptions on the trials and tribulations of laboratory operation. 

A meeting with fellow Australian, Professor Victor Nucombe, allowed a starkly honest interpretation of  the life of a Singaporean professional and an analysis of the nation’s history and future; from a typically Australian perspective. Professor Nucombe covered previously undisclosed aspects of the country’s past and illustrated the events that potential prefaced their current prosperity.

Most impressively, the astonishingly confident, eccentric and ultimately compelling Nucombe was transparent with his motivations in relocating to the city-state. Unsurprisingly, financial benefit and the promise of immediate application of his research compelled the Australian’s operations. He described the government’s relationship with the industry as unlimited and under the pretence that a research environment would be constructed “where money is no object”. However enticing this may appear, it was extended by the his establishment of Singapore’s economic future. 

Currently, Singapore is the fourth largest financial centre globally and contains the greatest percentage of private wealth per capita worldwide – making it the wealthiest country on Earth. The world bank has dictated that Singapore is the most suitable environment for private business, particularly those regarding the sciences. 

Professor Nucombe’s concern with the quality of Australian science permeated his presentation and accentuated the extension of an invite to aspiring Australian graduates. Personally, the enticements of Singapore’s scientific climate may be fruitful enough to attract myself, given the appropriate research opportunities arise.