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As Members would know, the transformation of our libraries is among the most thorough and dramatic ever experienced by our public sector agencies, in their drive to serve Singaporeans better.
Our goal is to stay ahead of changing preferences, and to continually delight library users. We site where footfall is high, and we put extra effort into space and programme design. Let me illustrate this with library harbourfront , which opened in January this year. During my visit, I was heartened by the scene of students, children, working adults and grandparents reading and learning under the same roof.
This is in spite of the downward trend in visitorship and loans observed in the libraries of many other countries. A major push on this front has been going digital, which has redefined convenience and the reading experience for all library users.
Mr Jeffery Sung discovered that within minutes of downloading the app, he was able to read newspapers from around the world and browse the bestselling books in town. Essentially, the App has placed the library within our pockets. Our eBook loans have more than doubled since Singaporeans who have yet to try eBooks or audiobooks can sample them outside the library at our eReads kiosks.
NLB will roll out eight to 10 more of these kiosks across the island this year. Each time we run this, we consistently get great feedback from our users, who take advantage of the promotion to read and borrow more.
I am pleased to announce that users need no longer wait for the school holidays; from 1st April, we will be doubling the physical loan quota from eight to 16 items permanently. In effect, library users will be able to borrow 32 physical and electronic items at any one time.
Reading is a great way to deepen our love for our mother tongues and ethnic cultures. It is currently shortlisting titles that Singaporean children up to the age of 12 years can enjoy and relate to, for translation into vernacular languages.
But Ms Noorjahan did not stop there; with the knowledge she gained, she has begun training others! It also shows how technology can be harnessed by Singaporeans to achieve great things. The answer is that NLB champions continuous, self-directed learning in many ways. Learning today is no longer confined to information gathering, but also actively practising in a guided environment, under the tutelage of mentors.
NLB will do even more. Over the next five years, we target to run 1, workshops benefitting more than 50, participants. I am pleased to say that for all the transformation our libraries have undergone, certain principles remain constant.
Libraries bring people of diverse backgrounds together. Another regular patron, Ms Leo Yih Nah, shared that book clubs were good social events that would help to lower the risk of dementia for seniors like her in the long run. It is committed to extending the multitude of opportunities I have elaborated on to all, especially learners amongst us who could use an added boost. One of our hallmark nationwide programmes is KidsREAD, which promotes early reading for less privileged children, and celebrates its 15th anniversary this year.
To bring the library even closer to them, WondeRead was launched in Similar to a subscription box delivery service, WondeRead delivers pre-loved library books quarterly to children who are not able to visit libraries on their own. WondeRead is accomplished with partner organisations, who either sponsored items in the box, or whose staff personally selected and packed books for each child. Many of the WondeRead beneficiaries look forward eagerly to their next box delivery.
As it enters the digital age, the National Library Board strives to keep improving, providing quality service in return for the love that our readers have for our libraries. Library collections now comprise not just physical books and hardcopies but also e-books, allowing people to access tens of thousands of books on their handphones and tablets. In , our libraries increased the loan quota for e-books from eight to 16 and response has been good. From April this year, users will also be allowed to borrow more physical books, up to 16 items per visit.
Second, the NLB is working with government agencies responsible for promoting lifelong learning and digital technology to transform libraries into a gateway classroom for Singaporeans to learn new skills and participate in future economy. Some of these courses are conducted in the mother tongue and suitable for seniors. We hope the public would go experience such training activities, which are held at Bedok Library, Toa Payoh Library and the newly opened library harbourfront at Vivo City.
Third, to encourage our kids to learn their mother tongue and to enrich mother-tongue reading materials, NLB will also select good children English books with local characteristics and translate them into Chinese, Malay and Tamil. Public Service Broadcasting is connecting to audiences better. Most Singaporeans would be able to recall growing up with their favourite local drama series, or tuning into news and current affairs programmes to follow the unfolding of national events.
Indeed, PSB must keep pace with changing consumption habits so that it is integral to the lives of viewers. Our national broadcaster is engaging Singaporeans across a wide range of platforms so viewers can easily discover and enjoy local content. Instead of the traditional approach of airing the show exclusively on TV, Mediacorp released content on an array of platforms. Its efforts had borne fruit. On top of the 1. Performance tracks were streamed more than , times on major digital music platforms such as Spotify, and social media and on-ground outreach events extended engagement further still.
In Mandarin, please. Through ground events and engagement, Suria and Vasantham are able to connect with their communities and celebrate culture and values, while increasing social media outreach and the visibility of their content and artistes. Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach, we customise the content, platforms and languages for different groups of Singaporeans. For our millennials, we produced a web series Ah Boys — Hidden Warfare, that covered topics of concern to them, like jobs and economy, and marriage and parenthood.
For older audiences, there was the Getai Challenge, where we adapted the skits and music performances of a familiar local tradition to share useful information with our seniors, such as housing, social support measures and diabetes awareness. For example, we rode on the festive cheer of the Deepavali and Chinese New Year seasons to share timely and informative content with our Indian and Chinese communities. Topics included financial planning and healthy eating.
Government agencies use a variety of means to better understand ground issues and concerns. These include outreach activities conducted by REACH, house visits and surveys which help our agencies assess public sentiment on issues, and public awareness of, and response to, government policies and programmes.
As a result of the survey findings, we decided to use Chinese dialects to communicate the package to our pioneers who were less comfortable with English or Mandarin. We will undertake a similar effort in planning our communications on the Merdeka Generation Package. The Government does not make policy decisions or decide communication strategies solely on the basis of surveys, but they help ensure that service delivery and policy implementation are satisfactory.
Other surveys released include studies of youth, national security awareness, as well as attitudes towards water conservation. As for coordination, agencies need the operational flexibility to conduct their own surveys on issues of concern within their purview.
Some questions may be common across different surveys because they are cross-cutting in nature. Our agencies coordinate such efforts when it is operationally feasible to do so.
Through public consultations, Singaporeans have a say in shaping public policies. More than 36, Singaporeans have provided feedback on issues like cost of living, jobs, transport and fake news, at more than REACH Listening Points and dialogues between and More than words: A translator's job Translation is more than just finding the right words in one language and rendering it to another; it also needs to carry the ideas behind them. Committee of Supply Every business is digitally-empowered, every worker is digitally-skilled and every citizen is digitally-connected.
Press Releases. Social Media. Cyber Security. Digital Defence. Digital Readiness. Government Technology. Infocomm Media. Personal Data. Public Comms. MCI's response to PQ on national data usage volume.
MCI's response to PQ on available help for seniors for digital access. New SG Digital Office established to drive digitalisation movement.
Introduction to Electronic Warfare