The key thrusts of the Centre's Research are: 



Snapshot of USS Series
The CLC’s Urban Systems Studies series

How did Singapore transform itself into a highly liveable and sustainable city within the last five decades? The Centre’s series of Urban Systems Studies (USSes) answers this by unpacking Singapore’s urban systems – systemic components that make up the city – and making sense of the various systems holistically. The USSes capture insights and tacit knowledge about Singapore’s development processes, distilled from in-depth oral history interviews with Singapore’s urban pioneers and rigorous engagement with experts and stakeholders. As a body of knowledge, the USS series not only illustrates the visible outcomes of Singapore’s development, but also reveals the underlying challenges and dilemmas of Singapore’s urban development story.

Forward-looking research


Featured Research Publications By CLC
The Centre publishes forward-looking research publications and collaborates with its research partners through platforms such as multi-agency workshops and roundtables.

Based on the lessons gleaned from Singapore’s urban development, how can cities create urban solutions that address the challenges faced today? The Centre adopts an integrated systems approach to build on insightful analyses of the diverse experiences of Singapore and other cities, in order to identify topics for further research. We collaborate with government agencies, academic institutions, international partners and experts across various platforms to develop innovative yet practical urban solutions for Singapore and other cities.

The Centre’s research focuses on the following topics:

Planning & Development

CLC Bike Workshop with Jan Gehl

In the face of competing outcomes for the environment, economy and citizens’ quality of life, how do cities optimise planning and development? The Centre studies how suitable planning strategies support the development of liveable and sustainable cities in the long run. 

Urban Governance

Parliament House

What are the enabling frameworks, rules and processes that transform a city’s vision into a reality? Drawing upon experiences from Singapore and other cities, the Centre delves into the operating principles and mechanisms that generate the ideal conditions for sustainable and liveable city outcomes. 

Environment & Resources

Building with Nature Cover 

In the face of rising urbanisation and other environmental challenges like climate change, how should cities build resilience and manage the delicate balance between built and natural environments? The Centre draws lessons from cities worldwide, including Singapore, to inform strategies for sustainable development.


Children Playing at Botanic Gardens

As societies change and become more diverse, how should urban planning and governance approaches adapt accordingly? The Centre examines key issues faced by Singapore and other cities, in planning for ageing populations, diversity in populations and creating inclusive, resilient cities.

Land & Economy

Singapore CBD

How can cities optimise their land and financial resources to keep its economy competitive? The Centre gleans lessons from Singapore’s and other cities’ on managing scarce land resources while remaining economically vibrant and competitive.

Image Credits

Urban Governance: Image Courtesy of Teddy Sipaseuth

Environment & Resources: Image Courtesy of the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources

Society: Image Courtesy of Elena Leong

Land & Economy: Image Courtesy of Someformofhuman on Wikipedia