“You call that a White Paper!?!?”

I was spending sometime looking through the Population White Paper, to think over the main points again.

I think some of my friends’ JC1 Project Work’s Written Report contains more references than the Population White Paper titled “A Sustainable Population for a Dynamic Singapore” (which has no References section), which was put up by the National Population and Talent Division (NPTD) which (if I remember correctly) is under the PMO. No wonder an academic once commented that if the White Paper is a term-paper, he would not hesitate to fail it, regardless if he agrees/disagrees with the content!

How can a paper so important to the future of a country and with wide implications, be in such a standard when compared to a term-paper?

Some references could be available in the occasional papers released by the NPTD, or elsewhere in the public domain. But shouldn’t the White Paper also include a Reference section so that readers need not search for the sources everywhere?

Wondering who is the author(s) of the White Paper, and why is it allowed to be published under such circumstances. Also wondering what tertiary students, researchers, academics, and many others who write papers and articles, and who have to put in the effort to quote the sources to avoid plagiarism, think about when they saw this White Paper?


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  1. #1 by Passerby on April 28, 2013 - 6:35 pm

    Is it a possibility that there isn’t a need to quote references because the statistics are their own? In addition, there are a few references to previous publications. (pg 68)
    Also they do credit statistics/assistance obtained from other government agencies on pg 76 (e.g Ministry of Manpower)

    link to pdf http://www.nptd.gov.sg/content/NPTD/news/_jcr_content/par_content/download_98/file.res/population-white-paper.pdf

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