Hybrid Management of Technology for Global Co-evolution: Insight from Singapore's Water Industry


  • Michele Y.C. Chew National University of Singapore
  • Watanabe Chihiro National University of Singapore




substitute, Hybrid management


Ensuring a sustainable water supply is crucial in all economies. Technological breakthrough has made possible the idea of using membranes to treat water. Recycling water and desalination are substitutes for the traditional water treatment process. While sea water is plentiful, the process of desalination depends largely on electricity, making the process costly. Singapore's success in NEWater (recycled water) depended on its stepwise advancement of membrane technology with sophisticated complementary engineering systems based on advanced information technology. This advancement contributes to electricity efficiency improvement in desalination which in turn accelerates dramatic advancement of the complementary engineering systems. Synergistic effects between NEWater and desalination can be expected by constructing a hybrid management of technology fusing indigenous strength and the effect of learning leading to a new phase in Singapore's NEWater development and also the trigger of its desalination endeavor. By means of an empirical analysis of Singapore's pioneer challenge, this paper demonstrates the significance of this endeavor for global sustainability.


Download data is not yet available.


Al Suleimani, V.R. and Nair, Z. (2000) ‘Desalination by solar-powered reverse osmosis in a remote area of the Sultanate of Oman’, Appl. Energy, 65:1-4, pp. 367-380.
Barragán, B., and Usher, J. (2009) ‘The Role of Multinationals in Host Country: Spillover Effects from the Presence of Autocar Makers in Mexico’, Contaduriay Administracion, 228, 83-104.
Chew, Y.C.M., Watanabe, C. and Tou, Y. (2010) ‘Technology Leapfrogging Findings from Singapore’s Water Industry’, Journal of Technology Management for Growing Economies, 1:2, pp. 29-47.
Chew, Y.C.M., Watanabe, C. and Tou, Y. (2011) ‘Vibrant Eco-system Creation for Sustainability: A Lesson from Singapore’s Water Industry’, Journal of Technology Management for Growing Economies, 1:3, [in print]
Clarke, R. (1993) ‘Water: The International Crisis.’ London, MIT Press.
Escobar, I.C., and Schäfer, A.I. (ed.) (2010), ‘Sustainability Science and Engineering – Sustainable Water for the Future: Water Recycling Versus Desalination Volume 2’, Oxford, Elsevier.
Fuck, M.P., and Bonacelli, M.B.M. (2009) ‘Institutions and Technological Learning: PublicPrivate Linkages in Agricultural Research in Brazil and Argentina’, Journal of Technology Management & Innovation, 4:2, pp. 33-43.
Kim, S.-H., Kim, G.-T., Yim, S.-Kuen., Choi, K.-H., Yoon, C.-H., Chood, K.-H. And Choi, S.-J.
(2002) ‘Application of energy efficient reverse osmosis for seawater desalination system’, Desalination, 144, pp. 361-365.
Koltuniewicz, A.B., and Drioli, E. (2008), ‘Membranes in Clean Technologies: Theory and Practice’, Chichester, Wiley-VCH, Chapter 5.
Public Utilities Board (2009) PURE Annual 2008/2009, Singapore, MediaCorp Pvt. Ltd.
Public Utilities Board, (2011) “Water For All. Public Utilities Board”, Available from : http://www.pub.gov.sg/LongTermWaterPlans/pipeline.html. Cited on July 4, 2011
Tan, Y.S., Lee, T.J., and Tan, K. (2009) ‘Clean, Green and Blue’, Singapore, Institute of Southeast Asian Studies.
Watanabe, C., Kishioka, M. and Carvajal, C. (2005) ‘IT Substitution for Energy Leads to a Resilient Structure for a Survival Strategy of Japan’s Power Industry’, Energy Policy, 33:8, pp. 1069-1084.
Watanabe, C. And Fukuda, K. (2006) ‘National Innovation Ecosystem: The Similarity and Disparity of Japan-US Technology Policy System toward a Service-oriented Economy,’ Journal of Services Research, 6:1, pp. 159-186.
Watanabe, C. And Zhao, W. (2006) ‘Co-evolutionary Dynamism of Innovation and Institution,’ in Yoda, N., Pariser, R. And Chon, M.C. (ed.), Chemical Business and Economics, Tokyo, The Chemical Society of Japan, pp. 106-121.
Watanabe, C., Lei, S. and Ouchi, N. (2009) ‘Fusing Indigenous Technology Development and Market Learning for Higher Functionality Development: An Empirical Analysis of the Growth Trajectory of Canon Printers’, Technovation, 29:2, pp. 265-283.




How to Cite

Michele Y.C. Chew, & Watanabe Chihiro. (2011). Hybrid Management of Technology for Global Co-evolution: Insight from Singapore’s Water Industry. Journal of Technology Management for Growing Economies, 2(2), 7–20. https://doi.org/10.15415/jtmge.2011.22007