in: Asian Journal of Social Sciences 38 (5), 785-818
Having limited land, manpower and natural resources to rest on, Singapore's government decided in the early 1980s to focus on high-level human resource development, knowledge and creativity for long-term economic growth. The subsequent government actions were often framed under the notion of `knowledge society,' commonly called `knowledgebased economy.' This paper assesses the construction of knowledge society via Singaporean state activities as a social construct of reality that — in Weber's understanding — orients and motivates actors. It is argued that this construct `knowledge society,' today is not only a technological and economic programme, but furthermore is offered as means to explain and justify economic and social changes that are taking place. Therewith, it is offered as a visionary guide for collective action and a focal point of collective identity reducing feelings of insecurity and uncertainty in Beck's second modernity.