Sunday, February 27, 2011

Books on Trade Unions and Labour Movements in Asia

This is a list of books focusing on trade unions and labour movements in various Asian countries:

Building Ships and Building a Nation: Korea's Democratic Unionism under Park Chung Hee by Nam Hwasook. Building Ships, Building a Nation examines the rise and fall, during the rule of Park Chung Hee (1961-79), of the combative labour union at the Korea Shipbuilding and Engineering Corporation (KSEC), which was Korea's largest shipyard until Hyundai appeared on the scene in the early 1970s. Drawing on the union's extraordinary and extensive archive, Hwasook Nam focuses on the perceptions, attitudes, and discourses of the mostly male heavy-industry workers at the shipyard and on the historical and sociopolitical sources of their militancy. Inspired by legacies of labour activism from the colonial and immediate postcolonial periods, KSEC union workers fought for equality, dignity, and a voice for labour as they struggled to secure a living wage that would support families. The standard view of the South Korean labour movement sees little connection between the immediate postwar era and the period since the 1970s and largely denies positive legacies coming from the period of Japanese colonialism in Korea. Contrary to this conventional view, Nam charts the importance of these historical legacies and argues that the massive mobilization of workers in the postwar years, even though it ended in defeat, had a major impact on the labour movement in the following decades.

The Political Character of the Indonesian Trade Union Movement by Tedjasukmana Iskandar. 2009 reprint of the 1958 Cornell account of the Indonesian Trade Union movement by a former Minister of Labour and Labour Party Vice-Chairman. The first chapter overviews the history of the trade union movement and its present (1957) state. The many different ideologies and backgrounds of the Trade Unions are discussed and Marxist-democratic and Communist identifications described. The entrenched political character and the national and international political activities of the Unions are the subjects of the last two chapters.

Workers and Intellectuals: NGOs, Trade Unions and the Indonesian Labour Movement by Michele Ford. After decades of repression, Indonesia's independent labour movement re-emerged in the late 1990s led by the NGO activists and students who organised industrial workers and spoke on their behalf. Worker-led trade unions returned to centre stage in 1998 when Suharto's authoritarian regime crumbled and labour NGO activists and their organisations continued to play an influential - and often controversial - part in the reconstruction of the labour movement. This book explores how middle-class activists struggled to define their place in a movement shaped by more than a century of fierce debate about the role of non-worker intellectuals. Drawing on extensive interviews, this book documents the resurgence of labour activism and explains how activists and workers perceived the position of NGOs in relation to workers and trade unions.

Trade Unions in Asia: An Economic and Sociological Analysis edited by John Benson and Ying Zhu. Offering a comprehensive account of the role of trade unions in Asia today, this book, put together by two editors who have published extensively in the areas of business and economics in Asia, covers all the important Asian economies: both developed and developing. Making a vital contribution to the very small amount of literature that has been published on this topic, this book focuses, in particular on how trade unions have organised to represent workers and the strategies they have adopted. It discusses the issues surrounding wages and working conditions, health and safety, women's employment opportunities and human resource development, in the context of the major regional economies, including Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, India, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia.

In Pursuit of Fair Play: Reminiscences of a Malaysian Trade Unionist by K. George. This is a compilation of outspoken articles written 2005-2007 by K. George (b. 1922) a leading and doughty veteran Malaysian trade unionist. Many different and ongoing problems are raised. These include: labour and religious issues, official abuses, corruption and crimes; human rights derelictions and abuses; discriminatory economic deprivations; the vendettas against Anwar Ibrahim; and dilemmas of Indian Malaysians.

Winning Against the Odds: The Labour Research Unit in NTUC's Founding by S.R. Nathan. President S.R. Nathan (b. 1924) has had a career of many different chapters. Here he writes of the 1961-65 period when as a civil servant he was transferred to work in the Labour Research Unit, a new body designed to support and deal with problems of the non-Communist trade unions and their members. Mr Nathan writes of his involvement with arbitration procedures and structural changes as well as with labour reorganisation. He was also involved in Singapore unions' relations with the ILO and the Communist-influenced international labour movement. Light is shed on political and social issues of the time, including the major achievements of the late Devan Nair, the 1964 Singapore Afro-Asian Labour Conference, and the 1964 founding of the NTUC. With archival photographs, appended articles on post-1965 changes, and index.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Books on Proverbs from Asian countries

Traditional proverbs can be illuminating even for the modern world. These books contain proverbs and words of wisdom from various countries in Asia:

Pearls Of Wisdom: Indian Proverbs & Quotations by Madanmohan Rao. With over 1000 proverbs and quotations translated into English from 24 Indian languages, this book presents a glimpse into the timeless wisdom of ageless India. From Lord Krishna to The Budda; from Kabir to Guru Nanak; from the Rig Veda to Panchatantra; from Subhas Chandra Bose to Mahatma Gandhi; from Oslo to Sri Sri Ravishankar; the proverbs and quotations in this book span a wide range of society and scriptures, ages and aspirations.

Asian Proverbs: Ancient Wisdom for the 21st Century. The essence of wisdom found its earliest expression in Asia. Collections of these memorable examples have survived for thousands of years, encapsulating lessons gleaned within particular societies and yet equally relevant in any other society – as indeed they remain today. The 520 carefully selected proverbs drawn from the ten countries featured in this compilation of Ancient Wisdom for the 21st Century are illustrated with artworks also derived from their respective sources. They appear both in their original script and in English translation.

Thai Folk Wisdom: Contemporary Takes on Traditional Proverbs by Tulaya Pornpiriyakulchai and Jane Vejjajiva. This dual language book, in Thai and English, brings to life fifty proverbs and sayings from Thailand with great creative flair. An explanation of each proverb is accompanied by a delightful tale of schoolgirl Lum Nam and her aunt and uncle. Her trials and tribulations in Bangkok links ancient Thai folk wisdom with the vibrant modern city. Each proverb is also accompanied by a vibrant illustration from a contemporary Thai artist. Artists featured include: Manit Sriwanichpoom, M.L. Chiratorn, Pinaree Sanpitak and Jakkai Siributr.

Best Loved Chinese Proverbs by Theodora Lau, Kenneth Lau and Laura Lau. With brevity, clarity and simplicity, Chinese proverbs help pass wisdom and insight through the ages. In this timeless, eloquent collection, they have been translated into English for the general reader. Through them, all readers can appreciate the fundamental truths about the natural world and the human condition through Chinese eyes, on many subjects such as adversity, fortune, happiness, moderation, neighbours, strategy, success, trust and others.

Asian Words of Knowledge: Reflections on Success, Self-Understanding and Spiritual Guidance edited by Steven Howard, Steven. People from around the world have long turned to the writings and thoughts of Asia's luminaries for insights into self-awareness, personal development, virtue, success, and the need for the continuous cultivation of knowledge. For easy reference, the publisher of this small volume has put together 400 Asian proverbs as well as 600 motivational quotes from some of Asia's most famous names, including Buddha, Confucius, the Dalai Lama, Tagore, and Mahatma Gandhi.

Many Ideas Open the Way: A Collection of Hmong Proverbs by Randy Snook. Here is a collection of Hmong proverbs, shown in its original Hmong language and translated into English. Presented simply for young readers, the proverbs can be enjoyed for their wit and wisdom, as well as the insight they give on Hmong culture.

To Swim in our Own Pond: A Book of Vietnamese Proverbs by Ngoc-Dung Tran. This book contains a charming and illuminating collection of Vietnamese proverbs, all of which have Western equivalents. Twenty-two proverbs from the countryside of Vietnam are given in Vietnamese along with their English translations. Each proverb is illustrated with lyrical and romantic watercolurs,that in delicate tones show the people and country of Vietnam as lovingly recalled by both the author and the illustrator.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Books on Educational Issues in Asia

This is a list of books that cover educational issues in Asia.

Education & Knowledge in Thailand: The Quality Controversy edited by Alain Mounier and Phasina Tangchuang. If an observer asked today whether Thailand is becoming a "knowledge-based society", the reply might be yes - provided that the country continues to invest in the education of her citizens. Yet the authors of this book take a strongly critical view of Thai education. Investing more money in education is certainly essential, but it will not automatically lead to a knowledge-based society. On the contrary, they say, current changes in policy and approach are actually moving Thai education away from transmitting and producing knowledge and scholarship, away from developing and honing individual abilities to think and learn. This failure parallels world trends: the uncontrolled and unbalanced increase in enrolment; the interference by political and economic interests in the orientation and management of educational institutions; and the commodification of education - in particular, privatisation, internationalisation and vocationalism. These symptoms are diagnostic of the so-called diploma disease which pervades the system. Public policymakers in Thailand are unfortunately too quick to compromise and may be unable to reverse this trajectory. The book is a lively interplay between theory and well-documented facts. It offers a quantitative and qualitative analysis which is fundamental to understanding the overall situation of Thai education, to advancing the debate on educational quality and to charting a course for the future. It will appeal widely to educators, students, parents, academics, researchers and policymakers who are concerned about the state of education in Thailand.

Education as a Political Tool in Asia edited by Marie Lall and Edward Vickers. This book offers a fresh and comparative approach in questioning what education is being used for and what the effects of the politicisation of education are on Asian societies in the era of globalisation. Education has been used as a political tool throughout the ages and across the whole world to define national identity and underlie the political rationale of regimes. In the contemporary, globalising world there are particularly interesting examples of this throughout Asia, ranging from the new definition of Indian national identity as a Hindu identity (to contrast with Pakistan's Islamic identity), to particular versions of nationalism in China, Japan, Singapore and Vietnam. In Asia education systems have their origins in processes of state formation aimed either at bolstering 'self-strengthening' resistance to the encroachments of Western and/or Asian imperialism, or at furthering projects of post-colonial nation building. State elites have sought to popularise powerful visions of nationhood, to equip these visions with a historical 'back-story', and to endow them with the maximum sentimental charge. This book explores all of these developments, emphasising that education is seen by nations across Asia, as elsewhere, as more than simply a tool for economic development, and that issues of national identity and the tolerance - or lack of it - of ethnic, cultural or religious diversity can be at least as important as issues of literacy and access. Interdisciplinary and unique in its analysis, this book will be of interest to scholars of political science, research in education and Asian Studies.

The Changing Role of Schools in Asian Societies: Schools for the Knowledge Society by Kerry Kennedy and John Chi-Kin Lee. Walk into a classroom in Tokyo, New York, London or Rotterdam, and the similarities in structure, activity, purpose and style will outweigh differences in language, dress and ethnic characteristics. Learning is regulated and rationed, teaching is a process or one-way transmission of knowledge, students need to be docile and conformist, assessment needs to sift and sort the bright from the not-so-bright, and rewards will be given to those who successfully negotiate this regime. But are these the kinds of places that can meet the needs of the 'net generation'? This volume is concerned with the debate about the nature of modern schooling in Asia. Traditionally schools are historical constructions reflecting the social, economic and political needs of the societies that invest in them. As Asia faces the challenges posed by the 'knowledge economy', its schools have taken on a new and quite different importance. This informative book outlines the broad policy contexts in which these transformations are taking place and the practical strategies that are needed to meet this objective. The authors argue that the future of Asian societies depends on a transformation that requires a fundamental restructuring of schools as we know them while maintaining their long-held cultural values. This book provides an overview of educational issues in Asian societies, establishes a broad theoretical framework in which these issues can be understood, contextualises issues by providing country case studies, and acknowledges the important role of culture influencing educational priorities.

E-Learning in China Universities by Wu Qidi. This book gives a comprehensive account of e-learning courses offered in universities in China. It reviews traditional forms of distance education - correspondence-based, radio-based, and television-based learning - and describes how these have contributed greatly to the development of higher education in China. With the wide application of modern information technologies, these traditional forms are gradually yielding to e-learning. Cases where e-learning was successfully implemented are described.

Globalisation and Tertiary Education in the Asia-Pacific: The Changing Nature of Dynamic Market edited by Christopher Findlay and William G. Tierney. The rapid development and adoption of technology along with open economies has created an integrated global economy. The globalisation process has brought with it significant changes in all areas of life, including tertiary education. This book outlines the features of the new wave of globalisation and draws out specific trends and challenges associated with this new wave for universities and policy makers.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

New Distribution Partner: Proverse Publishing

We are pleased to announce that we have been appointed as the exclusive distributor in Singapore and Malaysia by Proverse Publishing. Proverse Publishing is based in Hong Kong and led by co-founders Gillian Bickley and Verner Bickley.

Here is a selection of Proverse titles:

Tightrope!: A Bohemian Tale by Olga Wallo. The narrator of Tightrope!, an extraordinary, curiously intellectual small girl, undertakes the demanding and costly burden of comprehending the world. Her father - a peculiar leftist intellectual, and her mother, a neurotic actress, belonging to an old farming family - are more orless social outcasts, who fight for survival. The situation prevailing in Socialist Eastern Europe in the period after the Second World War - setting and inherent part of the fabric of this tale - produces incidents which are funny, cruel, and absurd, eliciting both laughter and compassion.

China Suite And Other Poems by Gillian Bickley. This is Gillian Bickley's fourth collection of poems in which she responds to people, art and life, creating a record of her particular space in time. Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai, Sukhothai, Honolulu, Mexico City, northernmost Scotland, Andorra are among the places featured. Intimates and strangers are the people. She is interested as much in a mother and son seen for some seconds on a bridge in Shanghai as in the emotions flowing between performer and conductor throughout a concert, and the interpretation one creative artist gives to that of another's work. She values the records we all make and the realization that classical stories are re-enacted in our own lives. The poet reads her poems on two audio CDs packaged with the book.

Instant Messages by Laura Solomon. Life is tough for 15-year-old computer nerd Olivia Best. Her twin sister Melanie, who used to be Olivia's best friend, has taken to drinking and self-harming. Her father has no job and a string of unpublished romance novels to his name. Olivia's mother has just left Olivia's father for her lesbian yoga teacher, Sue. To top things off, Olivia is being severely bullied by a gang of boys from a neighbouring estate. Together with her trusted ally, a stuffed toy green frog, Olivia attempts to navigate the stormy seas of her existence. Narrated by Olivia, Instant Messages charts the progress of the twins and other family members. It is a fresh and contemporary look at British family life, with a light and ironic touch that makes it a page turner and gives it substance.

Gin's Tonic: Ocean Voyage, Inner Journey by Virginia Macrobert. Gin's Tonic is the daily record of a journey that was as refreshing as the drink "Gin and Tonic" and as stimulating as a shot of caffeine. The author invites the reader to take a little time out, sit down and share a glass or two. What began years ago as just a dream in a little girl's mind, finally culminated in a very long journey under sail, shared by Henry the Dog, Coco the Cat, and various crew. This log of the voyage records real-life episodes with pirates, terrific storms and breakdowns in the middle of the most remote places on the planet. It describes how she and crew dealt with the different experiences thrust upon them. Ginni also describes the wonder of our awesome ocean "wilderness" and startling encounters with the intelligent life that lives in it.Under her captainship, Catamaran Sailing Vessel Dai Long Wan and crew left the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club dock on 1 October 2006, and arrived back on 9 March 2008, after an absence of 493 days, 265 on the ocean.

Refrain by Jason S. Polley. Refrain recounts the author's travels in India as an inexperienced and sensitive young man. The narrative shows wit, intelligence and a facility with words. The style is experimental and literary; and the fascination of the stories told - short stories in verse presenting the anxieties and misfortunes typical of shoestring travelling, and the culture-shock deriving from visiting a very different culture from ones own - carries the careful reader along. A knack for reading this less-than-conventional fast-paced book, which is at once humorous and nightmarish, passionate and detached, is acquired quickly.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Books on Southeast Asian Wildlife, Flora and Fauna

These are recent additions to our wide-ranging collection of books on the nature, wildlife, flora and fauna of the Asian region.

The Natural History of Amphibians and Reptiles in Sabah by Robert Inger. The Natural History of Amphibians and Reptiles in Sabah is a review of the rich herpetofauna of Borneo, including some of its less conspicuous and sometimes reviled members. Many of the species are unique to Borneo, most are active only at night, and most are completely dependent on forests for survival. This book on the frogs, lizards, snakes, turtles, and crocodiles bring together photographs demonstrating that many of these animals are beautiful in colour and fascinating in form. Written for naturalists, students and travellers, the text provides information showing that not only is fear of the vast majority of the species misplaced but also how these animals fit into the complex workings of Borneo's ecosystems.

A Field Guide to the Native Garden @Hortpark: An Urban Oasis of the Native Flora And Fauna of Singapore by Tan Puay Yok, Richard T. Corlett et al. One of the theme gardens at Singapore's Hortpark is the Native Plant Garden, designed to promote more knowledge and use of the 2150 plants native to Singapore. Colour photographs, scientific data and horticultural and usage information are given in this book for 107 species which are in the Garden. With plant lists which indicate plant habits, care requirements, and traditional and landscape usages.

A Photographic Guide to Birds of Bali, Java and Sumatra by Tony Tilford, with photography by Alain Compost. The 2010 edition of the year 2000 photographic pocket guide to the birds of Bali, Java and Sumatra introduces 236 of the 635 known beautiful and sometimes threatened avian species of the area. General advice on birdwatching, a glossary, regional information, guidance on tracking and locating, on known birdwatching vantage points and on the National Parks introduce the photo insets for each species. Scientific names, identification characteristics and habitat preferences are included along with some reference to individual habitats. The book's thumbnail reference system is useful. With reading list, websites and index.

A Field Guide to Reptiles of South-East Asia by Indraneil Das. This impressively presented field guide gives scientific information on all the recorded reptiles of mainland Southeast Asia and the islands of Greater Sunda. Some 700 species are presented with colour illustrations and identification details. The full listings of 1000 species of crocodiles, turtles, lizards and snakes include local and scientific names, habitat, distribution, status and physical data for each species. With practical advice on snakebite, bibliography, glossary, Internet listings and index.

Wetlands in a City - The Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve by Chua Ee Kiam. The Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is perhaps not widely known but since 1989 it has been a safe haven for several species of migratory birds as well as a habitat for mangroves and many species of swamp dwellers. Outstanding photographs are on every page. An account is given of the difficult beginnings of the Reserve, the policies which underlie it, and the need for meticulous management to promote eco-balance. The photographs indicate what wonders the patient visitor may see from the boardwalks and viewing posts. Some of the urgent challenges which face the Reserve are outlined and its educational and international roles are noted.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Book Event: Chinese Muslims in Indonesia

Two Chinese Muslims in Indonesia book launch events were held in Indonesia in January 2011. We have a book launch planned for Singapore around March. More details when we have them.

The first event in Indonesia was held in Surabaya on 18 Jan 2011, at CCCL Syrabaya, in conjunction with author Zhuang Wubin's photo exhibition "Chinatowns of Southeast Asia" and photography workshop "Exploring Surabaya Chinatown", held on 18 to 22 Jan 2011.

The second book launch was held in Jakarta on 27 Jan 11 at Antara Photojournalism Gallery, Jakarta. The book was
reviewed in the Jakarta Globe by journalist Zack Petersen. Click here for the article.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

New Distribution Title: Many Ships One Boat

Many Ships One Boat: Singapore Expat Tales & Tips by Madanmohan Rao.

Digging beneath statistics and reports, this book explores the human and humorous side of expat life in Singapore, through the delightfully different narrative styles of 20 expatriates living in this bustling Singapore.

The contributors are a truly ecletic group - kindergarden teachers, financial planners, editors, engineers and more - who come from a wide range of countries: India, Australia, Indonesia, Thailand, the UK, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Korea, Philippines, Germany, China and Hungary. Their range of experiences is bound to provide new insights for anyone reading this book.

Joys, discoveries, frustrations, tips, cultural slips, quirky personalities, provocative insights, raunchy digs – this book has it all!

About the Editor

Madanmohan Rao is a consultant and prolific author, blogger and tweeter on subjects ranging from knowledge management and new media to world music and travel. Madan grew up in India, went to graduate school in the US, and worked in Italy and Brazil. He was formerly communications director at the United Nations Inter Press Service bureau in New York, and vice president at IndiaWorld Communications in Bombay. He is the editor of five book series: The Asia Pacific Internet Handbook, The Knowledge Management Chronicles, AfricaDotEdu, World of Proverbs and The Global Citizen.

About the Contributors

Sonya Madeira is of Anglo-Indian heritage, and married to a Canadian to add to the confusion. Today she runs her own marketing communications firm in Singapore. She is an unplanned entrepreneur and is thankful for the opportunities Singapore has provided in the last year since moving here from India eight years ago with one suitcase

Bob Gill is currently group editor at media company Ten Alps Communications Asia, where he has responsibility for manufacturing and logistics related publications. He was born in London to parents who emigrated from Punjab, India, in the early 1960s. He moved into the trade publishing industry in 2003, the same year he became a permanent resident of Singapore.

Mirasta Lee is an ex-Australian who considers herself more Asian than Caucasian. She has lived abroad for almost twenty years; ten in Japan and nearly ten in Singapore. She is by day a hard-working kindergarten teacher and by night (and weekend) a full-time maid to two gregarious, young boys.

Lisa Park is a professional and educator working in the creative new media field. Born in South Korea but raised in different parts of the world, she enjoys the adventure of getting to know the world in her own perspectives and dreams of generating special pieces of art work to speak about the world that she lives in.

Herna Susanti grew up in Bandung, Indonesia, and is now a support engineer at an IT company in Singapore. She is a foodie and very passionate to discover new eating places or try cuisines from different countries.

Saranya Eawcharoen is currently a regional marketing head for a healthcare products firm. She has lived in Thailand, England and Singapore, and calls everywhere and nowhere home. She worked in Bangkok in the medical and healthcare fields, then went to the UK for an MBA in 1998. She moved to Singapore in 2007.

Barkha Patel is a communications consultant by training and is spending her time by the Mediterranean figuring out what is next on her professional anvil. Having grown up in Bombay, she moved to Singapore in 1999 and now lives in Tripoli, which clearly indicates - if nothing else - a pattern of wanting to stay in seaside cities!

Viv Palosaari is a primary school teacher who teaches English as a Second Language at an international school in Singapore. She is an Australian, born of two Finnish parents who emigrated to Australia in 1959. She was a nurse in Australia for 16 years and then retrained to become a teacher in her late 30s.

Ping Chu has lived in Australia, Malaysia and Singapore, and calls Australia home. She loves dancing, and her latest passion is the Hawaiian Hula. She is adventurous and loves to travel to different parts of the world to experience its sights, sounds and culture.

Kalinga Seneviratne is research director at an Asian media centre headquartered in Singapore. He was born and raised in Sri Lanka but spent 20 years in Australia and now carries an Australian passport. He has been living and working in Singapore for most of the past ten years. He is a journalist, television documentary maker and media analyst with a PhD in international communications.

Melinda Earsdon grew up in Newcastle, England, and has lived in Asia for 15 years. Regional marketing leader for Asia with Mercer, she is responsible for the development and implementation of strategic marketing, PR and communications plans throughout the region.

Arny Lim Pador is an optometrist by profession. She also finished a degree in nursing. She is currently working for an IT consulting firm as a business development executive in Singapore. Back in Philippines where she was born and raised, she worked as brand manager for eye wear, and contact lens brands.

Dorit Grueber was born and educated in Germany but has lived the past 18 years in Asia. She now mentors Singaporean startups in fields like music event management and travel services.

Esther Yap is an educator in Singapore. She arrived in Singapore from Malaysia as an ASEAN scholar, and has since graduated from a local university and had working stints in a few local companies.

Rosario P.S. can proudly say that she is the mother of three young adult kids (a boy and two girls). Now in her 40s, she was born in Baliuag Bulacan, Philippines. She is the fifth in a family of seven children (three boys and four girls), and has been working in Singapore for over 17 years now as a domestic helper and babysitter.

Echo Zhuang is a financial life planner. She majored in Chinese language and literature from a university in China. Born in Xiamen city, Fujian Province, she worked as an editor of a publishing house before moving to Singapore. She has recently joined Great Eastern as a financial life planner.

Bella Peneda is currently a pre-school teacher in Singapore. She has been living in Singapore for four years and enjoys travelling. She enjoys her work with children and has also done another diploma in teaching from MMI, London.

Kriszta Nagy is an English/French speaking tour guide from Hungary. She has a marketing manager certificate – but most of all, considers herself a traveller. She worked for several travel agencies in Hungary, and was also a referee for Tunisia, Malta and France.

Bhavana Rao has been living in Singapore for over 12 years with her family. She completed her studies in Bangalore, studying civil engineering and finance management; she began work in Mumbai as a financial researcher. She is currently working as a workshop supervisor at a voluntary welfare association that provides services for adults with disabilities.

Levy D. Alcantara was born in Tiaong, Quezon, Philippines, She graduated from the University of the East with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. For several years, Levy worked in the Philippines before relocating to Singapore in 1990. She is currently working at the Asian Media Information Centre as executive secretary to the Secretary General.